Nairobi: The death toll from a plane that crashed into a densely populated neighbourhood in Goma in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday morning has risen to at least 24, a provincial lawmaker and rescue worker.

Jean Paul Lumbulumbu, the vice president of North Kivu’s parliament, said 24 bodies had been recovered from the rubble. A rescue worker, who asked not to be named, said 26 bodies had been found. The aircraft crashed into residential homes near Goma’s airport in the North Kivu province.

The UN mission in Congo said it has sent an Emergency Crash and Rescue team with two fire engines to support Congolese authorities.

The aircraft was owned by private carrier Busy Bee and was headed to Beni, about 350km north of Goma in the same province.

Air accidents are frequent in Congo because of poor maintenance and relaxed air safety standards.