John Haruna, deputy inspector general, DIG, of police, was among four persons confirmed dead in a helicopter crash, which occurred in Jos, Wednesday, March 13. His orderly, the pilot and an engineer were among the dead. The helicopter was conveying the police officers from Jos to Abuja after taking off from Jos prison.
Emmanuel Ayeni, commissioner of police in Plateau State, confirmed the incident. The four persons were in a police surveillance helicopter, which crashed into a house, where a baby was confirmed injured. An unspecified number of persons injured on the ground were rushed to the Air Force Military hospital, in Jos.
Haruna was said to have been in a security meeting on Tuesday, March 12 where the strategy to address the security challenge of the state was discussed.
President Goodluck Jonathan has described the incident as unfortunate. In a statement issued by Reuben Abati, media aide, the president was said to have received the news with utmost sadness, describing the tragic event as a temporary setback, at a time all security forces are making concerted efforts to guarantee security throughout the country.
“President Jonathan commiserated with the bereaved families and the Police High Command, urging them to take consolation in the fact that these fine officers died in the course of national assignment,” the statement said.
He prayed that Almighty God will accept the souls of the deceased officers and grant the nation the fortitude to bear the loss.