The Chief of Nigerian Army Staff, Lieutenant General Ibrahim Attahiru was killed in a tragic air crash involving a Nigerian Air Force aircraft on Friday evening near the Kaduna International Airport, Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet confirmed.
He said “The immediate cause of the crash is still being ascertained.”
The Air Force confirmed the tragic incident and said that it was investigating the cause.
According to Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima of the Nigerian Army, Lt. Gen. Attahiru was enroute Kaduna from Abuja on Friday, 21 May, 2021 when the unfortunate incident happened.
The Nigerian Army said the Kaduna crash also claimed the lives of 10 other officers including the crew.
President Muhammadu Buhari received a briefing at the State House from the Defence Minister, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) and other security chiefs on the crash which led to the death of the Chief of Nigerian Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru and others.
The President said he was deeply saddened by the crash and described it as “one mortal blow to our underbelly.”
Mr. Buhari also said the demise of the officers will not be in vain.
“Deeply saddened by the air crash that claimed the lives of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru, and other military officers. All of them are heroes who paid the ultimate price for peace and security in the land.
“This crash is one mortal blow to our underbelly, at a time our Armed Forces are poised to end the security challenges facing the country. My condolences to the families of the deceased, the entire military, and all Nigerians. The deaths of these officers will not be in vain!”
Nigeria has recorded over 3 air crashes so far this year, according to reports.