President Muhammadu Buhari expressed amazement at the bandit attack on a Nigerian Air Force Alpha Jet in Zamfara on Tuesday, but expressed relief that the pilot had survived.
In a statement released on Monday, Air Force spokesman Edward Gabkwet said a Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Alpha Jet aircraft was shot down by bandits on July 18. Flight Lieutenant Abayomi Dairo, on the other hand, “lucky” survived the bombed plane.
“Fortunately, the aircraft’s brave pilot, Flight Lieutenant Abayomi Dairo, was able to successfully evacuate from the plane. The pilot, who came under heavy ground fire from the robbers, used his survival skills to elude them and seek refuge in neighbouring settlements until sunset,” Mr Gabkwet added.
Mr Buhari said the news was sad but he was relieved by the pilot’s escape in a statement sent by his spokesperson Garba Shehu on Tuesday.
“I was shocked to learn of the tragic news of the plane accident, but I was relieved to learn of the pilot’s successful ejection and subsequent rescue,” Mr Buhari said.
Read also: 49 Yoruba Nation agitators on Monday, and a Lagos State Magistrate Court in Yaba granted them bail
Mr Buhari prayed for Mr Dairo’s rapid recovery, saying, “May the injured pilot recover as soon as possible.”
The bombing of the NAF Alpha Jet by bandits occurs as over 134 students abducted in Tegina, Niger State, remain in a state of captivity.