He told reporters that the dismissal of the director would ease the investigation process.
"However, it has not yet been confirmed that it is part of the fuselage". The plane was supposed to steadily gain altitude but could be seen rising and falling several times in that data, the news agency reported.
Divers have been scouring the sea bed and have found belongings such as shoes, bags or shattered phones, pieces of plane and, among the debris, the grisly remains of those on board, mostly skin and hair.
Indonesian Search and Rescue (SAR) members and police officers check belongings of Lion Air Flight JT 610 victims at Jakarta International Container Terminal (JICT) in Tanjung Priok, Jakarta, Indonesia, on October 30, 2018.
"About three to eight minutes after it took off, I felt like the plane was losing power and unable to rise", Soetanto said, per the AP.
Budi Karya Sumadi, Indonesia's Transportation Minister, said 10 Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes operated by Lion Air and one operated by Garuda Airlines, Indonesia's national airline, have been grounded and are being inspected and evaluated by the transportation safety committee.
"This is a very hard time for our family", said Leo Sihombing, outside a crisis centre set up for family members at Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta airport.
In a 2015 interview, Kirana said that "my airline is the worst in the world, but you don't have a choice".
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Indonesia, a vast archipelago, is heavily reliant on air travel but many of its airlines have a poor safety record.
The Jakarta-based budget carrier has been involved in a series of incidents, including one in 2004 in which 26 people were killed after its plane skidded at an airport in the town of Solo in Central Java Province.
Inspections have already been carried out on Lion Air's other Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes, preventing them from flying.
A "black box" flight recorder from Lion Air flight JT 610 has been found by divers off the coast of Indonesia.
But the narrow-body jet was subsequently cleared for commercial delivery and has had thousands of orders from more than 100 customers worldwide.
Speaking at a press conference, Muhammad Syaugi said, "We have detected the black box signal".
Police said late Monday that 24 body bags had been transferred from the crash to a local hospital for post mortem.
Six body bags have been used so far for human remains recovered, according to a News Corp Australia Network report.
Another 14 bags filled with debris have also been collected.