KOTA KINABALU: STAR Sabah chief Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan said the Double Six tragedy (June 6, 1976) should not only be remembered as a tragic event but also as a history changing tragedy and be used to chart Sabah’s future course.
He said the plane crash had horrifically claimed 11 lives including the late Tun Fuad Stephens and three senior ministers and their loss is still felt today not only by their families and loved ones but by all Sabahans.
More tragically, he said, the tragedy changed the course of Sabah and brought about dire consequences in which all Sabahans are still suffering from until today.
“We need to reflect on some of the events like the signing of the Sabah Oil Agreement, a short eight days after the crash which until today altered Sabah’s wealth inheritance and led to a massive 95% loss of oil revenues and wholesale failure of development.
Jeffrey and other fellow leaders attended a memorial service organised by the party at the Double 6 Monument in Sembulan on Thursday to pay their respects and tributes to the fallen heroes in the tragic plane crash.
According to Jeffrey, lamenting and blaming it as a catastrophic misfortune and hoping for prevention of similar tragedies will be of no help to the future of Sabah.
He said the people need to acknowledge the mistakes of the past and learn from the painful and bitter lessons of the tragic Double 6 and its consequences.
“We need to remember the tragedy to avoid making the same mistakes and at the same time to rectify whatever past mistakes and use the lesson learnt to chart Sabah’s future.
“Sabahans must learn to love and protect Sabah, our homeland, our home and endear it to our heart and to save and preserve our beloved Sabah for our future generations,” Jeffrey added.