HC Deb 14 June 1921 vol 143 cc215-6
15. Mr. G. MURRAY

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that there is a strong desire for more representative constitutions in certain of the West Indian Colonies; whether he will consider the desirability of sending out next winter someone like the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies to inquire into the whole matter and to devise more suitable forms of government than at present exist; and whether he will consider as well the desirability of entrusting to anyone he may send the task of drawing up, in consultation and collaboration with leading persons in the West Indies, a scheme for a central advisory council to deal with the common affairs of those Colonies, with the object of submitting such scheme for the consideration of the various Legislatures after they have been reconstructed?


I have not hitherto received any conclusive evidence that a general desire for a constitutional change exists in any West Indian Colony, except Grenada. My hon. Friend is aware that steps are being taken to effect an alteration in the Grenada Constitution. As was stated in reply to the hon. Member for Chelsea on the 7th June, I will, without committing myself in any way, consider the suggestion contained in the second half of the question; but I am disposed to think that the object of any such inquiry, if undertaken, should rather be to assist His Majesty's Government to estimate the trend of local public opinion, than to initiate schemes for political changes.