Botswana President survives near-plane crash

Ian Khama, left, shakes hands with Mokgweetsi Masisi. Phoographer: Monirul Bhuiyan/AFP/Getty

Reports from Botswana indicate that the country’s President Masisi survived a potential helicopter crash in the country’s second-largest city Francistown on Saturday.

In a statement issued by the Botswana Defence Force and the Office of the President on Saturday, the state said the presidential helicopter was forced to make an immediate precautionary landing while at Francistown airport upon arrival from Mathangwane.

“While taxiing for landing at Francistown Airport, the pilots reported an engine fire indication whereupon they promptly executed an engine shut down and landing on runway 13 at the airport.

“The BDF wishes to assure the nation that all required maintenance and safety procedures are taken to assure the safe passage of His Excellency the President as well as any other principles in their care. The same care is taken for the safe operation of all BDF flights regardless of who is on-board.” the statement said.

There has been a running feud between Masisi and former President Ian Khama recently which has made the Botswana intelligence to issue a statement warning of an impending coup emanating from the two centres of power between the two.