Mutharika asks for God’s intervention on the missing flight

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Saulos Chilima

Former Malawi’s President, Peter Mutharika, has asked God to intervene on the missing flight which was carrying Vice President Saulos Chilima and nine others.

Writing on his official Facebook page, Mutharika says his family is concerned by the events of the last hours and they join Malawians in prayers for the safety of the Vice President and the crew and other passengers on the missing flight.

“As we hold steadfast in prayer, may we reflect on the following words of comfort from the Scriptures. The 33rd Psalm, verses 20 to 22:

Peter Mutharika
Our hope is in the Lord – Mutharika.

“So our hope is in the Lord. He is our help, our shield to protect us. We rejoice in Him because we trust His Holy Name. Lord, show your love to us as we put our hope in you,” he posted.

Information made available to the public by the government indicates that Chilima was aboard a Malawi Defence Force chopper to attend the funeral of the former Justice Minister and Attorney General, Ralph Kasambara on Monday in Nkhatabay district. However, the plane failed to land at the Mzuzu airport due to bad weather.

The aviation experts advised the pilot to return to Kamuzu International Airport for a safe landing, but it is feared to have crashed around the Raiply in Chikangawa Forest, the biggest man-made forest in the whole of Southern Africa.

The government confirmed that authorities lost contact with the plane at 10 am on Monday.

“The Office of the President and Cabinet wishes to inform the general public that the Malawi Defense Force Aircraft that left Lilongwe today, Monday 10th June 2024 at 09:17 Hours, carrying the Vice President, the Right Honourable Dr. Saulos Klaus Chilima, and nine others, failed to make its scheduled landing at Mzuzu International Airport at 10:02.

“All efforts by aviation authorities to make contact with the Aircraft since it went off the radar have failed thus far. As such, the Commander of the Malawi Defense Force, General Valentino Phiri, has since informed His Excellency Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera of the incident,” Secretary to the President and Cabinet, Collen Zimba, has said in a statement that was released on Monday afternoon.

President Lazarus Chakwera was forced to cancel his trip to the Bahamas due to the incident.

Other sources said that Chilima’s phone was last available at around 10:30 yesterday morning. The plane was expected back in Lilongwe an hour after returning from Mzuzu.

Meanwhile, no reports are indicating any development on the matter. However, the search team, including the Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST) drone experts is in the forest searching for the missing plane.

Minister of Information Moses Kunkuyu and MDF Commander Valentino Phiri provided information on what was the current status of the missing plane, saying it is yet to be found, but, they will be providing updates after every two hours.

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