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Malawi Vice President Dr Saulos Chilima, 9 others die in plane crash after aircraft goes missing in mountain

Among the victims was former first lady Shanil Dzimbiri, adding to the profound loss felt across the nation. President Lazarus Chakwera declared a national day of mourning and ordered flags to fly at half-mast until the day of the funeral to honor the memory of the deceased.

Malawi Vice President Dr Saulos Chilima, 9 others die in plane crash after aircraft goes missing in mountain forest AJR
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First Published Jun 11, 2024, 1:22 PM IST

Malawi is reeling from a devastating blow as Vice President Dr Saulos Chilima and nine others have tragically lost their lives in a fatal military jet crash. The aircraft, which departed from Lilongwe, Malawi's capital, was en route to Mzuzu International Airport when it disappeared from radar amidst adverse weather conditions.

Despite air traffic control's cautionary warnings, the pilot attempted a landing, prompting concerns about the safety of the flight. Subsequently, the aircraft vanished from radar, sparking a massive search effort. Hours later, search teams located the wreckage in the Chikangawa forest, confirming the heartbreaking news that all ten passengers on board had died.

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Among the victims was former first lady Shanil Dzimbiri, adding to the profound loss felt across the nation. President Lazarus Chakwera declared a national day of mourning and ordered flags to fly at half-mast until the day of the funeral to honor the memory of the deceased.

The ill-fated flight was bound for a solemn occasion, intending to attend the funeral of a former government minister. Tragically, the journey ended in disaster, claiming the lives of not only prominent figures like Vice President Chilima but also three military crew members and other passengers.

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Vice President Chilima's tenure was marked by significant political events, including his pivotal role in the 2020 presidential election rerun alongside President Chakwera. Despite recent legal challenges, his sudden and untimely death has shocked the nation, leaving behind a legacy of service and dedication.

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