(Last Updated on April 24, 2021 by GERALD NCUBE)
HARARE – Government has set up a board of inquiry to investigate the circumstances around the fatal crash of the Air Force (AFZ) helicopter which claimed four lives on Friday afternoon.
Defence Minister, Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri revealed the government’s decision following her visit to the families of the crash victims on Saturday.
The helicopter crashed into residential homes in the Hukuru area in Acturus claiming the lives of the crew members (two pilots and a technician) and a child who was in the house that caught fire after the crash.
The deceased included 30-year-old Flight Lieutenant Annita Mapiye who was Zimbabwe’s first female combat helicopter pilot, Captain Tinashe Manyowa and Tinodaishe Chikamhi who worked as a technician at the Air Force.
In a statement, AFZ said the helicopter had left the airbase on a “general handling training sortie.”
“The helicopter took off from Manyame AFB with two pilots and one aircraft technician on board on a General Handling Training sortie in the Seke-Domboshava Training Area. When contact could not be established with the aircraft the Base activated a Search and Rescue effort, the wreckage was identified.
Air Force Commander, Air Marshall Elson Moyo also sent his condolences.