One of the passengers who were aboard the Precision Air flight has narrated his ordeal of the last minutes before the plane plunged into Lake Victoria.
The incident has left 19 passengers who were on board dead as others are recuperating in hospital.
While seated on his hospital bed where he is currently undergoing treatment, Richard Komba has told The Citizen they left Dar es Salaam at a quarter past 6 am.
“All seemed well between Dar and Mwanza, the weather was just fine,” said Komba.
“As we approached Bukoba, the pilot alerted us that the weather was not fine and that it was raining heavily so we went past Bukoba towards the border with Uganda before we could turn back,” he added.
He tells the Tanzanian-based publication that on return, they were notified that if the weather was still not good the captain would have to go back to Mwanza.
“Soon we began our descent on Bukoba Airport, there was so much turbulence and it was still raining heavily, we found ourselves in the water,”
He narrates to the publication that with the plunge, soon water started spilling into the aircraft saying ‘in fact, I was lucky to have been at the back.
“We had a cabin crew with us who helped us open the emergency exit and soon we found ourselves outside the aircraft.”
But that perhaps was their easier part because it took long before any help could arrive and even when it came it was a hand-paddled wooden boat used by fishermen on the lake, The Citizen reports.
“There was no immediate evacuation plan and we got worried that the boat could be overwhelmed,” said Komba.
The airplane plunged into Lake Victoria in the early hours of Sunday, November 6, while preparing to land at Bukoba Airport.
The dead include cabin crew and passengers, however, it is not clear whether the dead were all passengers or some were part of the rescue team, The Citizen has reported.
Tanzanian Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa visited the scene on Sunday afternoon.