7 killed as Nigerian Air Force plane crashes near Abuja airport

Seven people died after a Nigerian military plane crashed near Abuja airport on Sunday morning, according to officials.

The Nigerian Air Force plane, Beechcraft KingAir B350i, had reported engine failure, military spokesman Air Vice Marshal Ibikunle Daramola tweeted.

He added that the plane was on the way to Minna.

Minna is a city about 110km northwest of Nigeria’s capital, Abuja.

The smell of burning chemicals lingered in the air but no fire or smoke was visible, a witness told the Reuters news agency.

The air force said an investigation into the crash was under way.

“We should remain calm & wait for the outcome of investigation by the military,” Nigeria’s Minister of Aviation Hadi Sirika said in a Twitter post.

Witnesses told local media they saw the plane struggling to turn around and get back to the airport before the plane exploded.