- Report that one of the NAF aircraft crashed in Zamfara state while returning from a successful mission has been confirmed
- The force's spokesman explained that the crash of the Alpha Jet was because it came under intense enemy fire
- Flight Lieutenant Abayomi Dairo, the pilot of the aircraft had ejected himself from the jet before it went down on Sunday, July 18
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) on Monday, July 19, confirmed that one of its aircraft crashed while returning from a successful air interdiction mission in Zamfara state.
Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, the NAF director of public relations and information, made this known in a statement sent to Legit.ng.
According to the spokesman, at about 12.45 pm on Sunday, July 18, a NAF Alpha Jet aircraft came under intense enemy fire following its mission between the boundaries of Zamfara and Kaduna state.
Fortunately, the pilot of the aircraft, Flight Lieutenant Abayomi Dairo, survived after he successfully ejected himself from the aircraft.
Dairo who came under intense ground fire from the bandits was able to elude them. He maneuvered his way to a Nigerian Army Unit where he sought refuge and was finally rescued.
The gallant pilot affirmed that the presence of NAF aircraft within the area of the crash site helped in scaring off the bandits who were after him.
Gabkwet noted that despite the setback of the crash, NAF remains committed towards fulfilling the president’s mandate.
No crash occurred in Kaduna
Earlier, reports claiming that a Nigerian military plane, an Alpha jet, crashed somewhere in Kaduna state on Sunday, July 18, have been dismissed by the Nigerian Air Force.
The director of public relations and information of NAF said that no crash occurred in Kaduna.
An intelligence officer also denied reports of the military plane crash, saying a military jet conducted aerial bombardments of armed bandits in Zamfara, returned to base successfully.
He said the aircraft took off from Katsina for an anti-banditry operation against bandits in a neighbouring state.