A serious tragedy has been averted after a plane carrying the Osun State governor, Ademola Adeleke and his special advisers caught fire at take-off point at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) in Lagos.
According to Leadership, the incident happened on Tuesday at the domestic wing of the Airport when the jet was about to take off from Lagos to Abuja.
However, the incident wasn’t formally communicated to the concerned Aviation regulatory authorities, a development that is against standard protocol.
The private jet is believed to be owned by billionaire businessman, Chief Adedeji Adeleke, father of Afrobeat singer, David Adeleke, popularly known as Davido.
According to report, the jet, with Osun State governor, Ademola Adeleke, on board and his top aides at the time of the incident, had taxied to the end of the runway, shortly before departure, when a loud explosion was heard from the engine of the jet, causing it to abort take-off immediately.
“No deaths or injuries were reported, and other passengers in the plane as of the time of the incident could not be ascertained,” a source privy to the development said.
It was gathered that the jet had been parked at the Executive Jet hanger of the Airport before it was deployed on September 5.
Athough there were no injuries or deaths recorded from the incident, however, it was learnt that all parties including the Airport authorities, the Osun State government and the owners of the private hanger have been desperate to ensure that the news of the incident doesn’t get to the public domain.
The chief executive officer (CEO), Executive Jets, owners of the hangar where the private jet was parked, Sam Iwuajoku confirmed the incident
He revealed that the Chief Adeleke’s private jet had Foreign Object Damage (FOD) that made the aircraft experienced high temperature, which resulted into the explosion.
According to him, the FOD was caused by a bird nest in one of the engines of the jet.
“At take-off, the engine had high temperature and it was caused by bird nest in one of the engines of the aircraft. It happened when an aircraft is parked and not properly covered so, birds will build their nest and anything they bring into the aircraft can spark high temperature.
“It happened to one of my aircraft in 2021, we had to remove the engine and the engine was in Germany for 14 months. So, it’s a common thing in Africa because we have birds around,” he stated.