South Sudan’s leader has ordered the suspension of local operator South Sudan Supreme Airlines after the fatal crash of a Let L-410 turboprop.
President Salva Kiir Mayardit says he is directing the ministry of transport and the civil aviation authority to “suspend” the carrier’s operations.
“This measure is necessary for these institutions to ascertain airworthiness of the remaining South Supreme [aircraft],” he says.
“It is also a necessary step to restoring public confidence in air travel in the country.”
He says the aircraft came down in Urot county, Jonglei state, on 2 March.
The president says the suspension is a “temporary measure” to address “avoidable air accidents” before civil aviation laws are “strengthened”.
Jonglei state’s government says 10 fatalities resulted from the accident which, it adds, occurred at the Pieri airfield at about 17:05.
It identifies the aircraft as being registered HK-4274 – a registration which would normally be associated with Colombia.
Colombia’s own civil aircraft registry does not list such a registration, although Cirium fleets data indicates it was formerly used on a helicopter which has since been transferred to the Guatemalan air force.
Cirium states that the L-410 is a 1987 airframe formerly bearing the number 5Y-SSA before being re-registered as TR-KSS, ahead of acquiring its current identity in October last year. The early history of the aircraft is unclear.