On Tuesday, September 5, 2023, a private jet belonging to billionaire businessman Chief Adedeji Adeleke caught fire at the take-off point at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) in Lagos. By a stroke of luck, a national tragedy was averted, multiple sources familiar with the incident told INFOXCLUSIVE.
David Adeleke, better known as Davido, is an Afrobeats musician. His father is Chief Adeleke. Additionally, he is related to Senator Ademola Adeleke, the governor of Osun State.
The incident’s involved Bombardier Global Express 6000 is owned by Chief Adeleke. The Adelekes fly their family in this jet.
On the fatal day, the incident took place at the domestic wing of the airport at about 9 a.m when the jet was about to take off from Lagos to Abuja.
The incident, however, was not properly reported to the relevant Aviation regulatory authorities, which is against policy.
According to reports, the plane carrying Osun State Governor Ademola Adeleke and his senior aides at the time of the event had just rolled to the end of the runway when a huge explosion was heard from the jet’s engine, forcing it to instantly abort takeoff.
According to a source familiar with the situation, “No deaths or injuries were reported, and other passengers in the plane as of the time of the incident could not be ascertained,”
Before being deployed on September 5, the jet was parked at the Airport’s Executive Jet hanger, according to information obtained by INFOXCLUSIVE
Although there were no reported injuries or fatalities as a result of the incident, several sources told INFOXCLUSIVE that all parties, including the Airport authorities, the government of Osun State, and the owners of the private hanger, had been anxious to prevent word of the incident from reaching the general public.
As of Saturday afternoon, INFOXCLUSIVE has been unable to get in touch with Governor Adeleke or any of his staff members. Even though one of the passengers, who wished to remain unnamed, told our correspondent that the hangar operators suspected foul play because both of the aircraft’s engines were damaged.
However, Chief Adeleke’s private jet suffered Foreign Object Damage (FOD), which caused the aircraft to experience excessive temperature and cause the explosion, according to Sam Iwuajoku, CEO of Executive Jets, the company whose hangar the private jet was parked in.
He said that a bird nest in one of the jet’s engines was what led to the FOD.
“At take-off, the engine had a high temperature and it was caused by a bird nest in one of the engines of the aircraft. It happens when an aircraft is parked and not properly covered so, birds will build their nest and anything they bring into the aircraft can spark high temperatures.
“It happened to one of my aircraft in 2021, we had to remove the engine and the engine was in Germany for 14 months. So, it’s a common thing in Africa because we have birds around,” he stated.
Credible sources, however, revealed to INFOXCLUSIVE that the jet had been used by Davido the day before, on September 4, refuting Iwuajoku of Executive Jets’ account of the occurrence.
While attempting to contact the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) for confirmation, calls and text messages to Capt. Musa Nuhu, the director-general, were unanswered as of the time this report was submitted on Saturday.
However, a dependable source told our correspondent that the NCAA was not informed of the occurrence since the Authority’s Air Worthiness Department was not made aware of it.
“NCAA is not aware of this incident because the Air Worthiness Department is not aware,” the source, who requested anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak on the subject, said.
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