A Nigerian air force pilot has died after two aircraft crashed while rehearsing for the country’s 58th Independence Day celebrations, spokesman for the Nigerian Airforce said Friday.
The spokesman, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, said the pilot had “successfully” ejected from one of the F-7Ni aircraft during the rehearsals in the capital, Abuja.
The pilot later died due to complications from injuries sustained on impact, the air force said in a statement.
He was among three pilots forced to eject from their aircraft, which crashed in the general area of Katamkpe Hill. There were no civilian casualties, the statement said.
The Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has launched an investigation into the cause of the accident.
Nigeria has planned an “elaborate” independence anniversary celebration, the first since 2010 when multiple bomb blasts killed several people near Eagle Square, venue of the celebration.
The attack was carried out by militants group, Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta, known as MEND, led by Henry Okah who has been convicted by a South African Court
Nigeria’s Independence Day is on Monday.