Pilot killed in Nigerian F-7NI crash


One of the Nigerian Air Force’s F-7NI fighter jets crashed on Saturday in bad weather, killing its pilot.

The aircraft came down near Yola, the capital of Adamawa state after returning from an interdiction mission.

Air Force spokesperson Dele Alonge said in a statement that the crash was due to bad weather. “There was no survival as the pilot of the aircraft lost his life in the unfortunate incident,” Alonge said.

Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has “set up an investigation panel to unravel the remote and immediate causes of the accident”.

On August 29 a Nigerian Air Force Dornier 228 crashed into a house in Kaduna shortly after takeoff, killing all those on board.

The Nigerian Air Force lost an F-7 in a crash on 2 May 2012, another on 22 March 2011 and a third on 11 May 2011.

In 2005 Nigeria approved the $251 million procurement of 12 F-7Ni single seat fighters and three FT-7Ni dual-seat trainers from China. The package also included $32 million worth of PL-9C air-to-air missiles, rockets and bombs.

Nigerian pilots began training on the jet in China in 2008 while delivery began in 2009 and concluded in mid-2010.