DEVELOPING STORY: One pilot confirmed dead in Nigerian jets crash

Interior of an Airforce fighter jet which crashed during a military show of force in the air on Katampe hill in Abuja on Friday (28/9/18). One occupant is feared dead. 05201/28/9/2018/ Hogan Bassey/BJO/NAN

The Nigerian Air Force has confirmed that one of the pilots involved in Friday’s fighter jets crash has died.

PREMIUM TIMES reported how two fighter jets on rehearsal for Nigeria’s Independence Day celebrations crashed in Katampe district of Abuja.

The Air Force had while confirming the crash said no life was lost.

However, spokesperson of the Air Force, Ibikunle Daramola, in an update said one of the pilots later died.

“It is with a heavy heart that I regretfully announce that one of the pilots who successfully ejected from one of the F-7Ni aircraft that crashed earlier today has passed on. May his soul RIP. Additional details on the incident will be communicated later. Thank you‬,” Mr Daramola said in a short statement via his twitter handle.

A government source earlier confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES that one of the pilots died.

The source also explained how the accident happened.

He said one of the jet’s wing clipped the other, forcing both to go down.

“Only one of the pilots was able to eject, the other one couldn’t (he is one of the best pilots in the Airforce) and he died on the spot,” the source said.

He added that the pilot that ejected did not land well and has sustained a serious head injury. He said the survivor requires urgent surgery.

In his update, Mr Daramola did not provide any details on the surviving pilot.+++

Read our earlier story below

Two Nigerian jets have crashed in Katampe area of Abuja, residents have said.

The Nigerian Air Force has also confirmed the crashes.

”I wish to confirm an air incident involving 2 Nigerian Air Force aircraft taking part in the rehearsals for the 58th Independence Day Celebrations. Thankfully no lives were lost. Details will be communicated later,” the air force spokesperson, Ibikunle Daramola, said in a short message sent to PREMIUM TIMES.

Our reporter saw three Mi-35 Military helicopters hovering over the area.

Witnesses also saw several first responders heading to the area.

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