Three people died in the helicopter crash which happened on Thursday night around the Federal University of Technology in Yola, the Adamawa State capital, the Nigerian military has said.
The military said in a terse statement posted on Defence Headquarters blog the victims were crew members aboard the helicopter.
“At about 2200hours yesterday 13 November 2014, a ground attack helicopter on an armed patrol crashed around the Federal University of Technology Yola, Adamawa State,” the military said in the statement.
“The crew of 3 was lost in the ill-fated accident. Rescue party worked throughout the night to preserve the wreckage of the aircraft and scene of the accident for proper investigation to be carried out. Further details would be made known later.”
The helicopter crashed less than three days after another one on surveillance mission went down in Damare, a suburb of Girei Local Government Area of Adamawa state. No life was lost in that incident.
The spokesperson of the Nigerian Air Force, Dele Alonge, an Air Commodore, had confirmed the Thursday night’s incident to PREMIUM TIMES.
He however stressed, “But one thing is clear, the helicopter did not come under enemy fire. It has nothing to do with the enemy.”
Another chopper on surveillance mission had on Monday crashed at Damare, also in Girei Local Government.
The defence Headquarters later said no one died in the incident.
News of the latest helicopter crash came about two months after a Nigerian Air Force fighter jet, went missing during routine operations in the northern part of Adamawa State.
The Nigerian Air Force aircraft went missing on September 12.
The aircraft, an Alpha Jet (NAF 466), was involved in the counter insurgency operation against the extremist Boko Haram sect.
The whereabouts of the missing Alpha Jet had become a subject of conjectures following the inability of the Nigeria Air Force to tell Nigerians what actually happened to the fighter jet.
Boko Haram insurgents later claimed shooting the aircraft down in a video in which they appeared to slaughter one of the pilots of the missing jet.
But last week, local fishermen claimed they found wreckages of the jet in the River Benue.
The fishermen said they found the aircraft at Kwa Ine Village, Demsa Local Government, about 50 kilometers away from Yola, the Adamawa state capital.
PRNigeria, an agency that distributes press statements for Nigerian security agencies, said Friday that “since the Boko Haram campaign of terror commenced in full scale in the North East states of Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states, the Nigerian Air Force has flown at least 6,000 missions in efforts to rid the zone of insurgency”.
It added, “The missions, aiming to decimate, degrade, destabilise and demoralise the Boko Haram terrorists with a view to completely curtailing their freedom of actions, comprised ground attacks platforms, mission on ATR-42, Beechcraft air surveillance platform, airlift missions using the G-222 and the C-130H.
“Chief of Air Staff of the Nigerian Air Force, Air Marshal Adesola Amosu, said at a recent forum at the University of Ibadan that the scope of the operations included airlift of troops and equipment, rotation of forces, battlefield interdiction, casualty evacuation, air surveillance, and armed reconnaissance missions among other operations.”
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