[ . BACK to TOP . ]


***** Location: Worldwide
***** Season: Non-seasonal Topic
***** Category: Humanity


Plane Crash in Kenya Kills 14 Members of Peace Delegation

By Emily Wax
Washington Post Foreign Service

NAIROBI, April 10, 2006

In heavy fog and torrential rains, a military plane carrying Kenyan political officials along with police and religious leaders crashed in a town north of the capital, killing 14 people and sending the East African nation into a period of mourning.

The plane crashed into a hill as it was trying to land in Marsabit, a rural town 280 miles north of Nairobi, according to news service reports. Three of the 17 people on the plane survived, including the two pilots.

The dead included two assistant cabinet ministers and the deputy leader of the main opposition party, all of whom were en route to a peace conference to discuss violence along the Ethiopian border.

"It is unfortunate that this tragedy has occurred when the peace delegation was on its way for a crucial meeting of bringing harmony among the communities living in the region," President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya said in a televised address to the country. He declared three days of national mourning.

Kenyan television showed graphic footage of charred corpses and harried emergency workers in white coats lifting bloodied bodies and covering them with sheets. Some of the workers cried. Witnesses said the aircraft, a Y-12 twin-engine cargo plane, burst into flames when it crashed.

"This is the worst tragedy to hit the National Assembly," the parliament's speaker, Francis ole Kaparo, told reporters with tears in his eyes. "We have lost a lot of very good people in this crash."

Officials said the dead included Mirugi Kariuki, assistant minister for internal security; Titus Ngoyoni, assistant minister for regional development; and Bonaya Godana, deputy leader of the Kenya African National Union opposition party and a member of parliament.

Kenya is known for its air safety record, despite frequent hailstorms. The last crash of a government plane, which killed Ahmed Khalif, the government's labor minister, was in January 2003.

The crash Monday was particularly upsetting to many Kenyans because the officials had traveled to northern Kenya to help ease regional tensions, government leaders said. Violence has broken out along the border over a scarcity of resources and cattle-rustling during East Africa's recent drought.

"They were trying to help, but the weather was terrible and foggy up there. It's a very sad day for all Kenyans," Alfred Mutua, the government spokesman said in a telephone interview. "We want to honor them with a good memorial service. They and their families deserve at least that."
© 2006 The Washington Post Company

Worldwide use

Things found on the way


From the PEACOCK Haiku Club, Kenya

As you know, right now we are in a three day mourning period due to the Marsabit Military Plane crash in which we lost 14 people among them 6 members of parliament. The tragedy was caused by bad weather; poor visibility that caused the plane to crash on a hill. These wonderful people were peacemakers.

Here is a poem about the tragedy.

rainy windy Marsabit
peacemakers perish
in plane crash

hundreds left homeless
Kilifi thirsty soil drinks showers
in land slide

drizzly morning
my umbrella becomes
my inseperable friend

beloved ones drown-
showers of blessing
wash away Kibera slums

dark skies
shed tears at night
the sun wipes the tears by light

Anne Nechesa


Mourning for KQ 507, May 2007

swollen airport...
a pressman struggling
amidst crowds

Read the report from



white-robed Catechist
prays for the red casket--
open prayer books

wails ring across
the green maize valleys--
wet handkerchiefs

with hoes and spades,
men in gumboots dig the grave--
wet muddy earth

framed photo
on the red casket--
wails and sobs

father and mother
mourn their beloved son--
hands on cheeks

heads bow
in respect and sorrow--
sun comes out of clouds

on three ropes
casket is lowered into the grave--
earth eats again

wooden cross
at the head of the grave--
end of life's journey

flowers planted
on the fresh grave--
new life

the Catechist
planting final flower on grave--
new life

Patrick Wafula, August 2007

Related words

***** Long Rains

Please send your contributions to
Gabi Greve / Isabelle Prondzynski
worldkigo .....

Back to the Worldkigo Index

No comments: