Kenyan minister, asst minister dead in plane crash
By C. Bryson Hull and Wangui Kanina NAIROBI, June 10 (Reuters) -
A Kenyan cabinet minister and assistant minister died on Tuesday along with two others in the crash of a light plane near the Masai Mara game reserve, officials said.
Roads Minister Kipkalya Kones, 56, and Assistant Minister for Home Affairs Lorna Laboso, 47, were aboard the plane with a pilot and a security guard, a spokesman for their party said. "I am confirming that they were on the plane that crashed. I am not confirming that they are dead, but the police are confirming that all aboard died," Orange Democratic Movement party spokesman Salim Lone said. Narok District police boss Patrick Wambani said all four people in the plane died.
There was no immediate confirmation for the cause of the crash in a remote area called Kojonga. "The plane came down on an unoccupied house and disintegrated, killing all four occupants," Wambani told Reuters in Narok, 120 km (75 miles) west of the capital Nairobi. In Nairobi, police spokesman Eric Kiraithe said the names of Kones and Laboso were on the flight manifest.
Both politicians were members of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party, which had opposed President Mwai Kibaki and advocated public protests after he won a disputed re-election in December. The vote sparked Kenya's worst violence since independence from Britain in 1963, and deal to end the political impasse brought ODM into a coalition government with Kibaki's Party of National Unity alliance.
Kones is a five-term member of parliament and was first elected in 1988, after a career as a teacher and manager at a produce firm. He has held several other ministries throughout his public career.
Laboso is a first-term legislator, who has campaigned against the cultural practice of female genital mutilation in her Kipsigis tribe. After a career as a secretary and accountant, she got her university degree in communications last year.
(Reporting by Wangui Kanina, Helen Nyambura and Bryson Hull; Editing by Jon Boyle)
This has all just been confirmed through our local news stations;
"Kones, Labosa, pilot Schner and bodyguard Kenneth Bett are all confirmed dead."