Two NAF pilots yet to be found as NAF confirms jet might have crashed

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Intelligence report gathered by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) indicates that the Alpha Jet aircraft (NAF475) that went off the radar with 2 crew members on board on 31 March 2021 might have crashed.

A statement signed by NAF Spokesman, Air Commodore, Edward Gabkwet said the cause of the crash as well as the whereabouts of the 2 pilots remain unknown.

The pilots on board the jet are Flight Lieutenant John Abolarinwa and Flight Lieutenant Ebiakpo Chapele.

According to him, extensive search and rescue efforts are still ongoing by NAF surveillance aircraft as well as NAF Special Forces and Nigerian Army troops on the ground.

He added that at this point, the NAF is not ruling out anything regarding the incident. It however remains hopeful that the crew would soon be found and rescued.

It would be recalled that a Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Alpha-Jet in combat operation ‘disappeared’ in Borno State and no traces of the aircraft has been found.

The NAF Alpha-Jet on Wednesday lost contact with radar, while on an interdiction mission in support of ground troops.

The loss of radar contact, it was gathered, occurred at about 5 pm, yesterday.

Sources told the security news platform that the fighter jet was seen flying around Goni Kurmiri and Njimia villages after attacking terrorist locations at the Sambisa Axis on Wednesday.

The mission was part of the ongoing counterinsurgency operations in the North East.