Juba, November 26, 2016 (SSNA) — A missing British pilot who takes part in vintage biplanes rally across Africa has been found in South Sudan Saturday after his plane went missing for the second time.
Maurice Kirk, the pilot in question, was reportedly found by locals in an isolated area. The locals first alerted a British citizen who later contacted UK embassy in Juba.
Reports suggest the 72-year old pilot is safe.
“Maurice is safe! We heard he had an engine failure and landed (not at an airfield) in South Sudan but had a puncture on landing. Locals found him and called a Brit in Juba they recently worked for. He contacted the British embassy in Juba,” Organizers of Vintage Air Rally (VAR) said.
Locals told the South Sudan News Agency (SSNA) that they have no idea how Kirk turned up in South Sudan, adding that they are happy because he is safe and well. There was no immediate comment on the pilot from the authorities.
The SSNA has learned that the pilot first went missing on Wednesday when the team left Sudan for Ethiopia’s border town, Gambella. The pilots were detained and questioned by Ethiopian authorities after the government allegedly said VAR’s pilots landed without a proper landing permit. Kirk was later found and instructed to join the group. It is not clear how and why he managed to fly again after he was warned not to because his plane suffered multiple engine malfunctions.