A security source has revealed how late Nigerian Air Force pilot, Bello Baba-Ari successfully manipulated his jet away from crashing on a populated area to avoid human casualty before ejecting from the aircraft.
Mr Baba Ari is one of the three pilots who ejected themselves from the two ill-fated F-7Ni aircraft that crashed while rehearsing a routine which included other jets and a larger one in the middle.
Two other pilots survived the crash, while Mr Baba Ari, a squadron leader, died.
The source, who spoke to PRNigeria on the condition of anonymity disclosed that: “Part of the routine was for the set of jets to divide themselves into two group on each side of the larger aircraft and they would bank away in opposite direction. It was in the process that two of the jets on the right brushed each other and began to tumble.
“As well-trained fighter-pilots who have wide experiences in counter-insurgency operations and other air drills, the officers controlled their individual aircraft from crashing on civilian populated areas to avoid human casualty before ejecting successfully… In fact Baba-Ari was the last to eject before the incident occurred.
“Sincerely, we will surely miss Baba-Ari because he was one of the fearless, courageous and humble pilots who like to obey directives on special missions and had taken tough challenges to save our nation.”