Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru has died in a military Beachcraft 350 aircraft which crashed at the Kaduna International Airport on Friday.
The late General was newly appointed in January. He died with 10 other officers onboard the aircraft.
The aircraft, with registration number 5N-R203, was billed to land at the Nigerian Airforce Base in the Mando area of Kaduna before it diverted and attempted to land at the Kaduna International Airport.
The officers were said to be on their way to Kaduna ahead of Saturday’s passing-out parade of soldiers from the Nigerian Army Depot in Zaria.
Also, the Nigerian Air Force confirmed that there was an accident involving one of its aircraft in Kaduna.
“An air crash involving a @NigAirForce aircraft occurred this evening near the Kaduna International Airport. The immediate cause of the crash is still being ascertained. More details to follow soon,” the NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Edward Gabkwet, said in a statement.
Over 18 military officers have lost their lives in the last three months in three crashes involving Nigerian Air Force jets.
On Sunday, February 21, 2021, seven NAF officers died onboard a Beechcraft KingAir B350i aircraft when the jet crashed in Abuja.
Also, on Wednesday, March 31, 2021, NAF spokesman, Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, said an Alpha-Jet aircraft involved in the anti-terror war against Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province lost radar contact in Borno State.
Two officers were onboard the missing jet which was later declared crashed and the whereabouts of the two airmen unknown till date.
Attahiru was appointed Nigerian Army Lieutenant General serving as the 21st Chief of Army Staff of the Nigerian Army on January 26, 2021 and served in that capacity until his death.
Prior to his appointment as the Chief of Staff, he had held several other appointments on the staff, instructional and command. He had a tour of duty with the United Nations in Sierra Leone as a Military Observer, where he facilitated United Kingdom military engagement, Operation BARASS in September 2000.