An investigation has been initiated to examine the incident that occurred yesterday, involving the crash of a Nigerian Air Force (NAF) helicopter during its journey from Zungeru in Niger State to Kaduna.
The NAF has commenced this investigation with the intention of uncovering the likely cause behind the occurrence.
Reports from villagers suggest that the aircraft may have been brought down by bandits shortly after taking off.
According to a statement by the NAF spokesperson, Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet: “A Nigerian Air Force MI-171 Helicopter on a mission to evacuate casualties crashed on 14 August 2023, at around 1:00 pm near Chukuba village in Niger state. The helicopter had taken off from Zungeru Primary School with a destination of Kaduna, but it was later discovered that the crash site was near Chukuba village in the Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger state.
“Current efforts are focused on rescuing the crew and passengers aboard the helicopter, while initial investigations have been initiated to ascertain the possible cause of the crash.”
Local residents claim that suspected terrorists shot down the helicopter, resulting in the death of one pilot and the injury of another.
These criminals reportedly ambushed and killed 13 individuals along the Zungeru-Tegina Road in the Madaka Ward of the Rafi Local Government Area.
When asked to clarify the conflicting accounts, Gabkwet responded: “We are committed to transparency and do not engage in concealing information. If there are pertinent details that we believe Nigerians should be aware of, we will promptly share them. However, as indicated in our statement, our investigation is ongoing.”
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