..Only 2 out of 7 can fly
The Malawi Defense Force (MDF) can only fly two helicopters out of the 7 in its possession as the rest are waiting for mantainance, the Investigator Magazine can reveal.
There has been a conspicuous absence of helicopters during the search and rescue missions in Southern Malawi. Two helicopters were last seen at the Region 5 sports games at Bingu Stadium in Lilongwe where they brought artists into the stadium.
In a shocking revelation, a senior military official confirmed to The Investigator that the helicopters have been on ground for close to a year.
“We have 7 helicopters. 2 are fit. The five were supposed to be sent to AirBus for servicing but nobody thought of it as a priority,” said the official.
That the two available helicopters cannot be used for rescue operations due to the weather. An option to used drones is being considered, MDF sources told us. The Puma type of helicopters that were last used in flooding in Lilongwe have not been flying since 2020
The levels of negligence has angered men in Uniform as they have dozens of men and women trained in search and rescue missions who are idle.
“We could have saved lives. Government has been withholding funding. The agreement with Airbus was done a year ago,” said another.
MDF press office has been asked to comment.