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Search continues for missing aircraft carrying Malawi vice president

Search and rescue operations will continue until the missing aircraft carrying Malawi’s vice president, Saulos Klaus Chilima, is found, the country’s president said on Monday (10).

Chilima, 51, was on board a military plane with nine others that left Lilongwe, the capital, at 9:17 am local time, Malawi’s Office of the Presidency and Cabinet of Ministers said in an earlier statement.

The statement said efforts by aviation authorities to make contact with the aircraft since it disappeared from radars had failed. The plane was supposed to land at Mzuzu Airport at 10:02 am.

The plane was unable to land at the airport due to poor visibility and was ordered to return to the capital, President Lazarus Chakwera said in a televised address to the nation.

“I am holding on to every fiber of hope that we will find survivors,” he said, adding that the search area was concentrated around a 10km radius in a forest reserve.

“I have given strict orders for the operation to continue until the plane is found.”

He said Malawi has reached out to neighboring countries, as well as the governments of the United States, United Kingdom, Norway and Israel, seeking support in rescue efforts.

Chilima, seen as a potential candidate in next year’s presidential election, was arrested in 2022 over corruption allegations.

However, a Malawian court dropped corruption charges against him last month after the director of public prosecutions filed a notice for the case to be stopped. Chilima denied any wrongdoing.

Source: CNN Brasil

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