Nigeria - Crashed Dana Plane Reported Engine Failure


A plane that crashed in Nigeria's main city of Lagos on Sunday, killing all 153 people on board, called the control tower to report dual engine failure shortly before going down, the aviation minister said on Wednesday.

"It was shortly after the captain's distress call that the aircraft could no longer be seen in the radar and communication was lost," Stella Oduah told journalists in the presidential villa.

The First Lady of Nigeria, Patience Jonathan came under criticism yesterday as news of the alleged closure of the nation’s airspace for a Presidential jet conveying her to Lagos on Sunday went viral on BlackBerry Messenger and online social networks.

The closure was said to have prevented the pilot of the distressed Dana Air’s plane from making an emergency landing at the airport. Reports circulated claimed that although the Dana plane had an engine failure, the distressed aircraft could have made it to the airport if it was not delayed by the VIP movement.
However, in response to this, the Special Assistant (Media) to the Minister of Aviation, Mr. Joe Obi, said the airspace was never closed for the First Lady on Sunday. He noted that the First Lady arrived in Lagos at about 4.45pm on Saturday, 2nd June, 2012 and only departed for Abuja on Monday, the 4th of June, 2012 at 1.30pm, whereas the ill-fated Dana flight 0992 departed Abuja on Sunday, 3rd of June, 2012 at 2.54pm and its last contact with the Lagos Control Tower was at 3.42pm as has already been announced.

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