MASVINGO plane crash: Finland investigators say Zimbabwe refusing to help

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By Staff Reporter

ZIMBABWEAN authorities are refusing to help with investigations into the Masvingo plane crash which killed three businessmen from Finland, officials in the European country have claimed.

All three, in addition to the Zimbabwean pilot, died on the spot when a privately-owned Cessna S206 plane crashed at Chamanjirenji Hills near the Tokwane-Ngundu area.

It was headed to Victoria Falls from Buffalo Range Aerodrome in Chiredzi. was not able to verify the allegations with the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe last night.

According to media reports from Helsinki however, Finnish accident investigators have turned to South Africans to help investigate the plane crash.

Finland’s Safety Investigation Authority (Otkes) said Zimbabwean authorities have been reluctant to share material concerning last month’s fatal accident in a mountainous of Masvingo province.

“We as well as our American colleagues have tried to get information from Zimbabwe – to no avail. That’s why we have now asked the South Africans to help us,” said Otkes director Veli-Pekka Nurmi.

American officials are involved in the investigation as the ill-fated Cessna S206 air plane was manufactured in the United States.

Information-sharing on international aircraft accidents tends to be easy, according to Nurmi, but in this case that has not happened.

“To our knowledge, local authorities are still investigating the crash.”

The light aircraft was en route to Victoria Falls when it crashed at Chamanjenjere Hills, killing all four passengers and the pilot, who was accompanying the group on a hunting trip.

The victims included top executives from Finnish stock-listed companies.