By Kazeem Ugbodaga
Boko Haram terrorists have claimed responsibility for the crash of Nigerian Air Force’s Alpha Jet that went missing in Borno State.
The Alpha jet aircraft went off radar on Wednesday, fuelling speculations that it might have crashed or shot down.
The terrorists, in a video released on Friday said they shot down the Alpha jet.
The unverified video, released on a Boko Haram social media channel showed a militant standing on what the group claims was the wreckage of the jet.
It showed the Nigerian flag and number NAF 475 on its fuselage, according to AFP.
The militant said “Nigeria Air Force jet fighter was sent to Sambisa to fight the Mujahideen.”
Earlier on Friday, a statement issued by Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, Director of Public Relations and Information, NAF, said intelligence report gathered by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) indicated that the Alpha Jet aircraft (NAF475) that went off the radar with two crew members on board on 31 March, 2021 might have crashed.
The cause of the crash as well as the whereabouts of the 2 pilots remain unknown. The pilots are Flight Lieutenant John Abolarinwa and Flight Lieutenant Ebiakpo Chapele,” he revealed.
He said extensive search and rescue efforts were still ongoing by NAF surveillance aircraft as well as NAF Special Forces and Nigerian Army troops on ground.
“At this point, the NAF is not ruling out anything regarding the incident. It however remains hopeful that the crew would soon be found and rescued,” he added.