An Agusta 106 Light Utility Helicopter belonging to the Nigerian Air Force has suffered a technical mishap, crashing into water in northeast of Borno.
The NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Olatokunbo Adesanya, who confirmed the incident on Thursday, said there was no loss of lives, adding that the pilots ditched the aircraft to minimise damage.
However, no life was lost in the incident.
The Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has constituted a panel of inquiry to unearth the cause of the incident.
A statement issued by NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Olatokunbo Adesanya, said members of the board of inquiry are already in Maiduguri to carry out their assignment on the crash which occurred in the early hours of Thursday.
The statement reads: “A Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Agusta 109 Light Utility Helicopter has suffered a mishap while undertaking a liaison mission targeted at further enhancing the synergy between the Nigerian Army and the NAF in the ongoing counter-insurgency operation in the North East.
“The incident, which occurred today, 6 July 2017, was as a result of an airborne technical fault with the helicopter.
“The experienced NAF pilots, however, successfully ditched the helicopter into a pool of water to minimize damage and loss of lives.
“Consequently, there were neither any injuries nor loss of lives to anyone on board or on the ground.
“The Chief of the Air Staff has immediately directed the constitution of a board of inquiry to determine the exact cause of the incident while efforts are ongoing to recover the helicopter and members of the board are already in Maiduguri to commence work.
“The NAF continues to solicit the understanding and support of the general populace as it daily strives to ensure the security of Nigeria and Nigerians.”
Our correspondent learnt that efforts were on presently to recover the helicopter.
“The Chief of the Air Staff has immediately directed the constitution of a board of inquiry to determine the exact cause of the incidence.
“Members of the board are already in Maiduguri to commence work,” Adesanya added.