Stowaway meets tragic end on Arik Air flight

A suspected stowaway was yesterday found dead in the main wheel well (the under carriage compartment) of an Air Arik  Airbus 330-200 aircraft after touching down at the Oliver Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, South Africa.


The aircraft flew the scheduled Lagos-Johannesburg flight route had earlier departed the Murtala Mohammed International Airport in Lagos at 3:55pm on Tuesday and arrived in Johannesburg shortly before 11pm.

Engineers of South African Airways Technical facility at the airport where the aircraft was scheduled for a routine maintenance check, discovered the body  during inspection.

“Investigations are ongoing to determine how the stowaway found his way into the aircraft’s main wheel well,” said Arik Air spokesman, Olabanji Ola. This was the third incident in the airline’s history of an alleged stowaway found dead in Arik’s plane. The last incident was reported in March, 2015 when a suspected Nigerian stowaway was found dead on the Arik Air aircraft at the Lagos airport while engineers were checking the plane’s preparation for a flight from Lagos to Johannesburg.

In October, 2012, another body was found on an   Arik’s Lagos-New York flight.

In September 2013, a 14-year-old boy, Daniel Oikhena, stowed away in an Arik Air Benin City-Lagos flight. The boy, who hid himself in the tyre compartment, however, miraculously survived the flight.

According to him, he thought the flight was America-bound from the Benin Airport, and had hoped to achieve his life ambition of a trip to the United States.

Stowaway persons usually have the backup of airline officials as they can’t successfully operate in isolation.



  1. Nonsense and share negligence, need to look beyond and urgently bring the culpable that abetting in this act to book according to the law. If found guilty, should be severely death with. Supposing,it were to be suicide bombers, what shall will be saying. Appropriate authority should take it up urgently.

  2. Purely the evidence of the dept of corruption in this country. Don’t be surprised, the poor man probably paid a handsome fee to get that close to the aircraft. Airport security system needs a serious overhaul. The fact that the frequency of occurrence is high with Arik, means that the company’s internal security is questionable. After all, there are other airlines too besides Arik so need go to work.

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