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Military Plane Carrying Vice President, 9 Others Goes Missing Off Radar

A military aircraft carrying Malawi’s Vice President, Saulos Klaus Chilima, and nine others has gone missing.

The 51 year old politician was aboard the aircraft that left Lilongwe, the capital, at 09:17am (0717 GMT).

Aviation authorities lost contact with the plane when it “went off radar,” according to a statement from Malawian President Lazarus Chakwera’s office. Chakwera ordered a search operation and canceled a trip to the Bahamas, his office said.

“All efforts to make contact with the aircraft since it went off radar have failed thus far,” it said.

Chakwera was informed of the missing plane by General Valentino Phiri, the head of the Malawian armed forces.

The aircraft had been scheduled to land at Mzuzu Airport at 10:02am, according to the statement. Malawi’s information minister, Moses Kunkuyu, told state broadcaster MBC that the search efforts had been intensified.

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Mr Chilima, seen as a potential candidate in next year’s presidential election, was arrested in 2022 over graft allegations.

However, a Malawi court dropped the corruption charges against him last month after the director of public prosecutions filed a notice for the case to be discontinued.

Though, Chilima denied any wrongdoing.

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