The Nigerian Air Force says its plane, which went missing on Wednesday in the northeastern state of Borno, may have crashed.
A statement issued by Air Commodore Director Edward Gabkwet on Friday said the intelligence gathered showed that the Alpha Jet (NAF475) was carrying two people.
“The cause of the accident and the whereabouts of the two pilots are unknown. The pilots are Flight Lieutenant John Abolarinwa and Flight Lieutenant Ebiakpo Chapele,” the statement said.
Air Commodore Gabkwet added that search aircraft, special air force and ground forces are still searching for the plane.
“At the moment, the air force cannot confirm the exact nature of the accident. But it hopes that the pilots will be identified soon,” he said.
Earlier, the Nigerian Air Force said the radar could not detect the whereabouts of an Air Force aircraft.
The fighter jet is on a mission to assist the army in the northeastern state of Borno.
Air Commodore Gabkwet said “the plane was grounded at 5pm on Wednesday, March 31st.”
“There is still no information on where the plane went or why it went missing, but we will inform the public as soon as we find anything,” he said.
The mission is part of the ongoing fight against Boko Haram.
The military also did not say how many people were on board.
“If the fuselage is not heard for 30 minutes, it will be declared missing,” Punch quoted a former air force commander as saying.
Last February, an Air Force fighter jet crashed in Abuja on its way to Minna, killing all seven officers on board.