Flight Lieutenant Abayomi Dairo escaped death by the whiskers when the fighter Jet he piloted was gunned down when he was on a war path against the bandits.
He escaped through Parachutes into a nearby village where the villagers protected him and hide him from the deadly gunmen who were searching the remnants of the crashed Jet Fighter if they could see any survivors.
In a statement on Monday, Spokesman of NAF, Edward Gabkwet, said Flight Lieutenant Abayomi Dairo, pilot of the ill-fated aircraft, escaped successfully.
It is unclear if Dairo was on the ill-fated aircraft alone or there were other persons on board as Gabkwet did not shed light on that.
Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao, received Dairo amid fanfare on Monday just as the pilot’s colleagues hailed him for his exploits chanting “The Aggressor, The Aggressor” hugging him left and right for his escape from the air mishap and bandit.
According to Daily Trust report, a resident, who did not want to be named for security reasons, said after bandits brought down the aircraft, the pilot jumped down and escaped into a neighbouring community.
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He said moments after the pilot escaped, bandits got to the scene of the crash to see if there were survivors.
“The pilot jumped down using parachute and quickly headed to a nearby community. Upon realising what had happened, residents decided to hide him.”
“The armed criminals were spotted loitering around the scene of the crash probably looking for any survivor.
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“The residents waited until dawn and asked the pilot to dress like a typical villager and then ferried him to the town where they handed him over to the district head.
“This morning two NAF helicopters and a fighter jet arrived and picked the rescued pilot. The helicopter landed near a Secondary School in the town while the fighter jet hovered around. The pilot was handed over to them and they took off immediately,” the resident said.
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Air Force’s statement
The account of the resident corroborated part of what Gabkwet said in his statement.
The Air Force spokesman had said the pilot found his way to “nearby settlements”.
NAF had refuted the earlier story that there was a Jet Fighter crash but later turn around to confirm that truly there was a crash but the Pilot survived it.
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