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Kenya's military chief and nine others die in helicopter crash

Kenya's military chief General Francis Ogolla is dressed in full uniform at the State House in Nairobi, Kenya, Nov. 14, 2023   -  
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Brian Inganga/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved


"I am deeply saddened to announce the passing on of General rancis Omondi Ogolla, the chief of the Kenyan Defense Force".  With those words Kenya's president William Ruto announced the death of the country's military chief Thursday evening.

"Together with him in the crash were eleven other graded military personnel. Nine who also passed on today, and two survivors" President  Ruto added, describing Ogolla as a distinguished four-star general. 

The helicopter came down in Kenya's Rift Valley, in Elgeyo Marakwet county the west of the country,  about 400 kilometres (250 miles) northwest of the capital Nairobi. The chopper burst into flames according to local media.

Francis Ogolla was born February 12 1962 according to reports in the Kenyan press. He was appointed chief of Kenya's Defence Forces April 28, 2023. He is survived by a wife and two children.

The government has announced a three day period of national mourning commencing Friday the 19th of April in honour of the victims.

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