Advertisement

Malawi vice president, nine others confirmed dead in plane crash, president says

Malawi's President Lazarus Chakwera, seen here, said Tuesday that Vice President Saulos Chilima and nine others died on impact when their plane crashed after encountering poor weather. File Photo by Justin Lane/EPA-EFE
Malawi's President Lazarus Chakwera, seen here, said Tuesday that Vice President Saulos Chilima and nine others died on impact when their plane crashed after encountering poor weather. File Photo by Justin Lane/EPA-EFE

June 11 (UPI) -- Authorities found the wreckage of the plane carrying Malawi's Vice President Saulos Chilima and nine others with no survivors on board, President Lazarus Chakwera confirmed on Tuesday.

In an address to the nation, Chakwera said all 10 people on the plane "were killed on impact" when it crashed while flying in bad weather after the wreckage was found in the Chikangawa Forest.

Advertisement

"Words cannot describe how heartbreaking this is. I can only imagine how much pain and anguish you all must be feeling at this time," Chakwera said

"Death has a way of reminding us that we do not have control of so many things that affect our lives."

Chilima and former first lady Shanil Dzimbiri were on the military charter which left Malawi's capital of Lilongwe north to Mzuzu to attend the funeral of the former minister but turned back because of poor weather conditions.

Authorities said others on the military MAF-T03 airplane included Lukas Kapheni, Chisomo Chimaneni, Gloria Mtukule, Dan Kanyemba, Abdul Lapukeni, a military colonel and two majors.

Chilima has served as vice president for a decade and came together with Chakwera, crossing party lines to form an alliance ticket that allowed them to win the 2020 elections.

Advertisement

"Saulos Chilima was a good man, a devoted father and husband, a patriotic citizen who served his country with distinction," Chakwera said. "A formidable vice president, I consider it one of the great honors of my life to have had him as a deputy and as a counselor."

Chilima, who had been viewed as a possible presidential candidate in national elections in 2025, had been arrested in 2022 for allegedly receiving payment in exchange for granting government contracts but those charges were dropped last month.

Latest Headlines