A plane operated by Kenyan-based airline African Express, crashed near Bardale Town in Somalia on the evening of Monday, May 4, leaving all six people on board dead.
According to reports by two Somalia publications, plane was ferrying medical equipment to Bardale town in Bay region and had two Kenyan pilots and two Somali nationals with the other two nationalities yet to be determined by the time of going to press.
Speaking to VOA Somalia, Southwestern Minister for Transport Hassan Hussein Mohamed revealed that two of the deaths were Somalis.
The ill-fated plane had left the capital, Mogadishu on its way to Baidoa then crossed into Bardale town before it crashed.
The Somali-owned Kenyan airline was on its way to deliver medical equipment and other supplies, including a satellite carrier with the cause of the crash yet to be established.
Unconfirmed reports indicate that the cargo plane may have been shot down by a rocket-propelled grenade.
According to Baidoa Online, all 6 people on board were killed including three cabin crew and three passengers - one passenger was a renowned businessman, Ali Galeyr.
The plane is reported to have been chartered by an NGO that sought to transport the medical supplies.
Our efforts to get a comment from African Express were unsuccessful after several calls went unanswered.African Express Airways was established in 1986 with its base being the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and is one of largest privately-owned airlines in East Africa.
By: Imran Otieno