Malawi Vice President Saulos Chilima passes away in plane crash

Mildred Europa Taylor June 11, 2024
Malawi's vice president. Photo: Twitter/Saulos Chilima

Malawi’s Vice President Saulos Chilima has died after a military aircraft he was flying in crashed in a forest in the north of the country. The 51-year-old leader was among 10 people who were killed when the small military plane crashed, the president said on Tuesday.

The aircraft left Lilongwe, the capital, at 09:17 am (0717 GMT) on Monday but suddenly went “off the radar”, leading to a search for survivors. The plane’s wreckage was found in a mountainous area in the north of the country after a search that lasted more than a day.

“I’m deeply saddened, I’m sorry to inform you all that it has turned out to be a terrible tragedy. The search and rescue team has found the aircraft near a hill,” President Lazarus Chakwera said during an address to the nation on Tuesday. “They have found it completely destroyed with no survivors.”

The military plane also carried former first lady Shanil Dzimbiri, the ex-wife of former President Bakili Muluzi). Vice President Chilima was on his way to represent the government at the burial of former cabinet minister Ralph Kasambara, who passed away three days ago.

Chilima had been vice president for 10 years, previously under former President Peter Mutharika, BBC reported. Before he became vice president, he was the managing director of the country’s leading telecommunications firm Airtel Malawi. He was the first Malawian to head the organization.

Chilima leaves behind his wife Mary and two children.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: June 11, 2024

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