KOTA KINABALU, Dec 6, 2011: A former state minister told the High Court here that he would certainly support a call for a re-investigation into the plane crash of June 6, 1976 that killed former Chief Minister Tun Fuad Stephens and all 10 others on board, including his loving brother Datuk Peter Mojuntin.
Datuk Conrad Mojuntin said by doing so, the incident would be put to rest and all those people who had unfortunately died in the air crash would be able to rest in peace.
"I myself would also be able to heal the grievous wound in my heart caused by the death of my loving brother Peter," Conrad said during examination-in-chief by counsel Datuk Simon Shim.
Mojuntin, 63, was testifying before Justice Dato' Abdul Rahman Sebli in the on-going hearing of a RM50 million suit brought by Tan Sri Harris Salleh against Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) president Datuk Yong Teck Lee and the party, for allegedly insinuating that he (Harris) was involved in causing the plane crash.
Shim is the counsel for Yong and the party, who are the first and second respondents respectively.
Harris, 81, who filed the suit on June 6, last year, is claiming for general damages, aggravated and exemplary damages of not less than RM50 million to be assessed separately against Yong and SAPP.
He is also seeking an injunction to restrain the defendants whether by themselves or their servants or employees or agents from printing and publishing further the statements and similar libel in any form or means.
Harris is represented by counsel Yunof Maringking and Trevor Maringking.
To another question from Shim, Conrad said that he was aware of a talk by Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah in Penampang on April 2, 2010 as he had read of it in the Daily Express.
He had also read in the same newspaper that Tengku Razaleigh had said that he would have been one of the dead in the crash if he was not called by the plaintiff to go to another plane to fly to somewhere in Kudat.
When asked on his reaction of Tengku Razaleigh's disclosure of the incident, Mojuntin said, "I have never heard before of what Tengku Razaleigh had said and surely I was shocked with what he had said because he had never made such a statement before."
"Since the so-called investigation into that plane crash on June 6, 1976 was not revealed, being the youngest brother of Peter, surely I would like to know the reason as to why that plane crashed,"
To a further question from Shim, Mojuntin said he was aware of a book called "The Golden Son of Kadazan".
He told the court that the author of the book, the late Bernard Santa Maria, came to see him regarding his intention to write the book.
Mojuntin said he encouraged him to do so, adding that the book was regarding the sacrifices and the political work of his loving brother Peter.
He however pointed out that in that book, it was not clear as to the cause of the plane crash.
The defendants' fifth witness told the court that the book has been banned a long time ago and that he did not know why it was banned and who banned it.
Mojuntin also testified in court that after Tengku Razaleigh's revelation regarding the plane crash, he wrote a letter to God on June 17, this year because he really wanted to know as to how the plane crashed.
He said his letter to God was published in The Borneo Post the next day.
The witness' letter to God and also the newspaper cutting were tendered in court as exhibits marked D1 and D2 respectively.
When Shim asked Mojuntin whether the latter was aware that there was a press statement made by Datuk Donald Mojuntin that the family did not want to have anything further to do with the call for re-investigation, Mojuntin said, "I read that in the newspaper."
However, he said he did not give any authority to his nephew Donald, to write on his behalf regarding the statement in the newspaper, adding that it was purely his (Donald's) opinion.
To another question from Shim, Mojuntin said he would like to know the truth as to how the plane crashed and for it to be revealed publicly.
By Kelimen Sawatan BP