APM briefed on security scare at Malawi’s major airport

Minister of Transport Francis Kasaila has said  President Peter Mutharika has been briefed on the incident where a man managed to board a plane grounded on the runway at Kamuzu International Airport (KIA), Malawi’s major international airport, and spent the whole night in the plane without being detected.

The  Bombardier Q400 parked at the Malawi airport

The Bombardier Q400 parked at the Malawi airport

Kasaila  said government was working on getting to the bottom of the incident.

The man is yet to undergo a medical test over his suspected mental illness .

KIA Police Public Relations Officer Sapulani Chitonde identified the man as James Govati, 25, from Kampachika Village, TA Mazengera in Lilongwe.

He reportedly removed the emergency exit door of the plane, a Q400 Bombardier belonging to Malawian Airlines, to make his way into the plane at around 3am Sunday and was only detected several hours later by engineers who noticed that the plane’s door had been removed.

According to Chitonde,  when the police questioned the man he said he wanted to travel to South Africa for medical treatment.

Malawian Airlines spokesperson Ovixlela Bunya confirmed told the local media that they are “still investigating” the matter, but pointed out that the plane had no scheduled flight on Sunday morning.

“The engineers went to check why the door was open and realised it had been removed, upon reaching the plane they saw a man inside and the man started running away from them. He was at the back of the plane and started running towards the cockpit,” said Bunya as quoted in The Nation.

Bunya said safety is Malawi Airlines “top most priority”  hence  they are making “every effort to establish how this person managed to get inside the plane.”

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48 thoughts on “APM briefed on security scare at Malawi’s major airport”

  1. Fireboy says:

    The plane was parked at the apron and not in the runway. I think the security personnel will tell us as to what happened. It once happened at Mzuzu airport in 1976 I think whereby an air Malawi norman islander got its engines started by a person from chibanja

  2. MAPWIYA NJOLOMA says:

    AT LEAST A MENTALLY-CHALLENGED PERSON HAS A PRESIDENTIAL JET. IT ONLY HAPPENS IN MALAWI.

  3. ochuluka nzeru says:

    I get worried each time I board a plane either in Lilongwe or Blantyre. Some security officers do not take searching seriously with our friends of middle east origin. Yet more plane security issues arise from such people. I am not suggesting they discriminate but security officers must diligently carry out all search details and not on trust basis because they saw/know this guy in a shop in Limbe!

  4. Mwawi mwasanga says:

    I hope somebody was kind enough to buy him a ticket to South Africa.

  5. Redeemed says:

    In terms of national security, complacency isn’t an option, how ever regardless of how vigilant a state or a country might be, loopholes will always avail themselves, even in developed countries whose security system is considered to be of supreme like UK. Apparently there were reports of some illegal immigrants who would risk their lives by hanging under an aeroplane as if takes off. Some would unfortunate fellow to the ground dead.

  6. Madalitso mmangitsa says:

    Its so sad!

  7. Our work ethic as Malawians leaves a lot to be desired. I remember arriving at KIA on the 11.00 pm Kenya Airways flight. We spent nearly 30 minutes circling in the air before landing, reason: the person who operates runway lighting had knocked off, taking the keys with him so they had to start looking for him all over Lumbadzi to come and switch on the lights, while we wait in the sky. It sounds like fiction, but it happened. That’s Malawi for you.

    There are so many examples that one can give to show that we do not take our jobs seriously and no wonder we have little to show for the 51 years of independence. We need to change our mindset, the sooner the better.

  8. EBUBE says:

    Don’t you think this is a stunt of some kind from the high authority? How can a mere mad man remove a door of a plane. Did he have tools?

  9. masauko Kakhiwa says:

    there is lack of seriousness in the way our police officers r working

  10. Kaya says:

    Malawi as a country is at the worst of everything under the auspices of this Mutharika government. Talk of fires, food insecurity, the poor economy, state insecurity etc. The list is endless. If I were the president, I should have resigned. The government is given to the dogs.

  11. conga player says:

    it just simply means those working in security sector dont work they are sweeting without sweating.be serious with your work

  12. Rep says:

    Think about it

  13. youna says:

    Our useless Policemen are busy kugwira vacab 9pm yet akulephera kugwira ntchito yofunikira ngati iyi? Where is the so called Chief Spy? Kodi munthuyu akanakhala wachifwamba chikanamuvuta ndichani kuphulitsa ndegeyo? We are not safe!

  14. funzo says:

    Go to KIA near midnight and you will find no-one there but the terminal is open. It is not difficult to imagine that security could easily be compromised.

  15. C. Mtunda says:

    Mmmmmmmmmh, testing, testing! how ready are we if terrorised? are we not sitting on a timing bomb? he might be an asignee just test the waters.

  16. JESUS IS COMING BACK says:

    Like that and you say you are ready for ISIL, AL QAEDA and Boko haram

  17. The man deserves an award. I believe he is the first one

  18. Nansani wa Chingoni says:

    Joke of the year 2016

  19. Denguzman says:

    Mchewa wonjoya mpakana kukagona mu ndege Apolisi otsaziwa? Chatsala pano ndikukapanga share bed with APM and Getrude. This is a very big joke in the history of Malawi as far as security is concerned. What ashame to MPS?

  20. Bikiloni Nachipanti says:

    Munthu ndithu akhoza kuvencha ndege ndithu mpaka kukafika Ku theba… It only shows that a Misala ena ali ndi nzeru kuposa bwampini…

  21. Chawona Chidyawonga says:

    Apa pakufunika msamuko this is really serious matter, assuming if a man was a sucide bomber that would have been the end shame!!!!!

  22. Mbuya says:

    Zuka Malawi zuka.ve guy is not insane koma anapita kukatamba ndiye analephera kutuluka dats y anali mkati amafuna akawonemo mkati mwa ndege

  23. Timanena Zoona says:

    Dausi and Kachama are busy on facebook and Nyasatimes noting down names and IPs of harmless Malawians whse only ‘crime’ is to tell truths on Muthalika’s poor governance record

  24. CHIPAPWICHE says:

    I think the security officers at KIA have gone to bed and they are failing to provide necessary security to the airport. This is a very serious security threat that can even lead to closure of the airport and police authorities need to look closely and seriously on the officers deployed there so that security confidence is restored at the airport otherwise this can bring serious impact to our conuntry

  25. Akungolonje says:

    Malawi ndi yofoila mu zonse. How can someone whether insane or sane, not an officer on duty for that matter manage to remove be it an emergency or which door of a plane without being noticed by the security personnel? Pakuti liti pa ubwenz ndi China basi ndiye chilichonse chilowe China?
    Zochititsa manyazi kwambiri anzathu a maiko ena kumamva nkhani ngati zimenezi. Pitani pa Lusaka, Ndola, Harare, Dar Sallam, Lubumbashi, Lichinga pompa kukaphunzireko za chitetezo cha mma Airport, otherwise this is total bullshit and life threatening. So it clearly shows that even Boko Haram can manage to steal all our aircrafts from KIA or Chileka, ndithu taonjeza kupusa. Kupempha ziphuphu basi ndiye yanu ku airport ko. Kulanda munthu ndi tablemat yomwe akatsika ndege!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Tsono a APM wo ndiye atani ngakhale mwafotokozere, munthu ndiye wapha kale tulo tokoma mndege?

  26. kate says:

    Tingoyamika kuti munthuyu anangokwelako ndegeyi whether is mental disturbed or not otherwise mukanapeza muthuyo wayiwulutsa ndege wapiti nayo ku south Africa kumene amafuna kupitako olo kwawo ie ku Chitipa or ku Mulanje. kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

  27. nyambura says:

    nkhani zake zopoyiratu man munthu kufuna kukwera ndege mokakamiza

  28. Generation of Vipers says:

    So after breifing APM, how many security personel currently working at the airport will be transferred to Nthalire??????

  29. Benjones says:

    Don’t worry pepo will now easily be able to connive with security and hide their iligal money and other precious to siphone out of our country. They have learned and I am sure some are already in these kind of deals.

  30. m'nganya muwemi says:

    Winawe gwira bango maka ku Chileka umadzimva u selebu

  31. kkilembe says:

    Stupid. Zomwezi mpakana presidential briefing. Shame Malawi @ 51

  32. Likoma Inteligence Services says:

    The bottom line is: there is NO security in this counrty. I can give a thousand examples: from presidential security to security of a common man in the streets.
    The country is full of dubious Pakistans, Nigerians, Burundis, etc all just walking in and out like going into a kitchen. Some are caught at KIA with fake passpots, forex, ivory, etc, but nothing happens. Nobody is monitoring the Islamic Fundamentalists!
    Mark my words one day soon, it will happen. It can be in Soprite, Game stores, or in lakeshore hotel where tourists flock to. If it happened in Kenya, what makes you think it cannot happen here?
    Al Queda, Al Shabab, and all the Al-s will one day strike. Then it will be too late.

  33. Peter Arthur Muthax says:

    Sometime back one person posted on Facebook the photo of a man riding a bicycle loaded with firewood passing through the road that is parallel to the waving bay inside the airport. These security lapses are dangerous. DPP Woyeeeeeee!

  34. james manyozo says:

    Fine munthu amafuna alaweko ndege

  35. Wakuchindikika says:

    Hahahahaha Malawian Police what a joke! What they know is begging from passengers. The Police don’t know their job description and it’s difficult to distinguish a police officer officer from an immigration officer @ the Airport. I’ve traveled to so many countries but what happens in our Airports is a shame. For example @ Chileka before you meet health and Immigration officials you find a bunch of police officers in plain clothes checking passports. I mean how can u quiz a person who is in a foreign land ( at the airport the person who has not being cleared is regarded to be outside the country). After being cleared and after Customs you find a Swarm of the same guys who checked your Passport at the entry and uniformed police officers soliciting money, asking silly questions and threatening you with unspecified action if u don’t pay ‘something for lunch’ it’s a big shame to our country no wonder instead of manning the gates and making sure our Airports are secure, a mad man managed to beat the security system. To make matters worse he used the gate which is used by VVIPS including the president himself. [email protected]

  36. Guantanamo says:

    People always sleep in buses at Wenela and other bus terminals. Why shud sleeping in a plane be a security scare?

  37. Ellias says:

    Malawian airports are not secured, tidzachangamuka when something big happens. In other countries, only passengers are allowed to enter the airport premises but here, we see relatives and friends escorting akuti kuperekeza achibale akupita kunja. No security personnel like chileka you only find securicors in red uniform with chibonga in their hands. If indeed this is a mad person and managed to enter the parked plane, what can stop a terrorist with full ammunitions to plant a bomb? Anadutsila pati?

    Wake up Malawi

  38. Dissector 1 says:

    This is seriously exposing and raping our national security in broad daylight. Its an embarrassment to the government of Malawi in view that Tanzania will not take us as serious contenders for Lake Malawi. If we can’t protect airports, seriously we can’t protect Lake Malawi.

  39. Nasibeko says:

    We are now tired of tactics to justify buying a plane to be used by the president, please buy for OFFICIAL ONLY.

  40. BBC says:

    Francis Kasaila is Bullshit and incompetent. Not fit for a full Minister. What a joke.

  41. Goodfall Mutharika says:

    This is the ultimate evidence that our country has gone to the dogs. How come this happens at a place which is supposed to be 100% secure 24/7 with no excuses.

    If an ordinary embicile can easily get on a parked aircraft, then how easy could it be for wanthu amagulu azauchifwamba achiluya kuyikamo zotchera tchera mndege.

    A Malawi masewero sachita paulimbo. Kumulola Pitala kupitiliza kulamula dziko lathu nchimodzi modzi kusewera pa ulimbo.

  42. Aviator says:

    There is an urgent need to constitute an independed aviation safety and security board to carryout oversight of the sector. The Department of Civil Aviation and indeed Aviation Security Branch of the police can not assume both the roles of service provider and regulator. This is an ICAO requirement and Malawi is a signatory to the Chicago Convention.

  43. Ine Dabwi says:

    So what did professor APM say after being briefed? His government has been wasting millions of Kwacha doing rehabilitation work on the airport, with no tangible results. Zamasanje basi! You are even failing to run the solar panels donated by donors. Za fodya basi! Go pa Kenya pompa. Their airport got burnt 2 years ago but now they have built even bigger and more modern world class terminals

  44. John M. says:

    The major thing is that here in Malawi the Security is 100% POOR. During our era. of the Well Trained Security Force, the mighty former Malawi Young Poineers (M.Y.P) this could not be like that. This article seems to be very Light to some pple who are’nt aware of Security matters, but to us who are well trained in this Field, it’s a serous case. Not only in our airports but elsewhere here in Malawi, even where they do call Malawi Millitary Bases, (Barracks), there is no Security. Thats why the whole Malawi it’s Security is @ risk. Mr. Dausi my fellow ex-M.YP. Plz!! We worked togather, try to train these Security personnels what is all about National security, try to bring back security in our Country. Plz!!! Armed Robbery? Child trafficking? & so on. Am so concerned.

  45. Chigumbuli says:

    Head of security operations at KIA has to be fired, no two ways about it. Shame!!!!!

  46. kwangu says:

    DPP and police are nose and mouth! no matter what happens DPP will always rally behind the lazy cops.

    Just imagine a mad person finding his way into a plane undetected! Jack Bauer of season 24 series ndiye akhodza kutiperepetsa tonse while internal security personnel are there. shameful! !!!!

  47. Adviser says:

    Our Airports are in desperate need of Upgrades especially security. Someone has to answer how does a man Breach the airport perimeter and manage to get onboard a plane undetected for several hours. What if that plane was owned by a foreign company imagine the diplomatic implications that can arise from that. What if he sneaked guns on for use by his accomplices letter in a hijack. This is serious and in other parts of the world the airport would be shut down and airspace would be closed. I do not like the way we respond to such situations in Malawi. I think we take our peace for granted.

  48. commando says:

    How secure is KIA? The Police r supposed to provide security 24/7 but what happened on Sun? A mentally disturbed person walking and entering a secure parked passenger plane? To me if a mad person managed to get into the secure area of the airport without being detected by the airport security how easy would it be for a hijacker to enter the aircraft? We need a specialized security unit to secure the airport and not the laissez fare operations which the Police r doing at KIA!

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