I had landed in Dar es Salaam airport and was busy refueling the plane when I heard a screaming noise, high pitched, and coming quite fast. Planes are supposed to taxi at a brisk pace according to the book…well this one was running fast. A Mig 19 from the Tanzanian Air Force, or should I say a Shenyang J6 made in China under license. Early 50’s technology but supersonic though. One had taken off just before me landing, did a long turn and zoomed above the airport. Funny enough, the military pilots used a special frequency to talk with the controller and we have to rely on him to pass on the information, which I hate. In bad weather I’d be scared.
the silver things below the wings are not bombs, luckily, but fuel tanks.
then another one taxied by, at least 20 min later, fast moving too.
last time I saw for a show during independence day, they wore a
dull grey painting.
twin jet engines. Each of the jets did a pass above the terminal.
Some FVIP’s were around.
the last one was all white. Wonder why. Here it is visible that the second
pilot in the backseat (maybe not a pilot though) wears a leather helmet! The
front pilot wears a typical white helmet. But one the previous aircraft showed
a pilot with a leather one too. Very modern, on a jet!
in Mwanza, there are a lot of Mig 21’s, or Chinese make J7’s, rotting on a far corner
of the airport. They are supposedly newer than the Mig 19 but many crashed,
specially in lake Victoria after take off. They have only one engine.
The ejection seats rarely worked. I’ve neverseen any flying here in 10 years anyway.
Tanzania is far from being the only country to use these antiques, and to be fair,
the technology might old but they’ve been produced for many years in China.