More than 100 people, including the spiritual leader of Nigeria's Mus-lims, were killed yesterday when a commercial airliner crashed after takeoff in the capital Abuja, officials and aviation sources said.
"The ADC plane took off this morning from Lagos to Sokoto en route to Abuja with around 110 passengers and crew. After dropping some passengers in Abuja, it took off for Sokoto. Some moments after taking off, it lost control and crashed," an aviation source said.
Sokoto State spokesman Mustapha Sheu said that Mohammadu Maccido, the Sultan of Sokoto and head of the caliphate, the country's Muslim community, was among those who perished in the crash.
"The Sultan of Sokoto was among the dead," Sheu said, adding that the sultan's son, who was a senator, was also killed, together with the northern state's deputy governor, education commissioner and another senator.
"There was a crash this morning involving an ADC passenger plane. The plane crashed and burst into flames at the outskirts of Abuja," a spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency, Ibrahim Farinloye, said.
The state-run News Agency of Nigeria said that top-ranking government officials, senators and politicians had perished.