Lucky escape...The remains of the plane flown by Taraba State Governor, Danbaba Danfulani Suntai, which crashed in Konawaya, Yola on Thursday
By Daji Nanbut Sani
Locals in Konawaya, the community in Yola, Adamawa State where the plane flown by Governor Danbaba Suntai crashed on Thursday, said the aircraft hit the ground with a loud thud that caused panic as they thought it was a bomb blast.
The head of the community, Mallam Ibrahim Muhammed, told THISDAY he had seen the plane spinning in the air before it finally crashed.
Muhammed who spoke in Hausa said: “I was just sitting at my block industry a few metres from the scene of the crash when I saw an air craft turning round and round before it crash landed.”
He said that although the entire community has since been praying for the quick recovery of the governor and his aides.
The locals are hopeful the government would come to the aid of persons whose farmland and crops had been destroyed by the aircraft.
One of the affected persons at the crash site on the precincts of the NNPC depot along Numan Road, Mr. Zira Koji, told THISDAY that at about 6:00pm on Thursday they were at home when they heard a loud sound. On arrival, he said, they discovered that it was a plane crash on his farmland – and not a bomb blast as they had feared. According to him, his crops worth N500, 000 were destroyed.
“I sympathise with the government,” Koji said, “but I’m pleading that the government should assist me with some money so I would be able to feed my family. The farmland destroyed by the crash is my only source livelihood.”
A primary school teacher, Mallam Bala Adamu, said he had also seen the plane in its final throes before the crash.
“I ran and reported the matter to the village head, but on getting there, he told me he had seen it too,” he said, echoing the sentiment of other residents that loud noise from the troubled aircraft had created the impression it was a bomb blast.
Another resident, Hajjiya Godiya Dauda, who spoke in similar vein, said the crops in her farm had been ruined by the crash. She also appealed to the government to assist affected farmers.