Wreckage found

Malawi’s vice president killed in plane crash

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11.06.2024 13:36

Saulos Chilima, the vice president of the East African state of Malawi, has been killed in a plane crash. President Lazarus Chakwera announced on Tuesday that the military plane with Chilima and nine other people on board, which had been missing since Monday, had been found in a forest area north of the capital Lilongwe. There were no survivors in the completely destroyed aircraft. Chakwera spoke of a terrible tragedy and praised Chilima as an exemplary politician and human being.

Chilima and his companions had taken off from Lilongwe on Monday morning, but never reached their destination. Due to bad weather conditions, the air control authority had recommended a return to Lilongwe shortly before the planned landing. Shortly afterwards, contact with the pilots was lost and the plane disappeared from the radar. The cause of the crash was still unclear on Tuesday. "Something terrible has gone wrong with this plane," said Head of State Chakwera, who himself had only just flown on board the ill-fated aircraft.

On the way to the funeral
Chilima had wanted to attend the funeral of a former member of the government in Mzuzu, around 370 kilometers from Lilongwe. Shanil Dzimbiri, former First Lady of Malawi, was also on board the plane.

Saulos Chilima with his wife Mary on Sunday, June 9, 2024 - one day before his crash. (Bild: AP)
Saulos Chilima with his wife Mary on Sunday, June 9, 2024 - one day before his crash.

The charismatic Chilima was first elected Vice President of the south-east African country in 2014. He was universally popular in Malawi, especially among young people. In 2022, however, he was removed from office and arrested during his second term of office due to allegations of corruption.

Last month, a court dropped the charges and Chilima resumed office. The 51-year-old wanted to stand as a presidential candidate in the elections planned for September 2025.

This article has been automatically translated,
read the original article here.

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