4. Mr. ROBINSON
asked the Minister of Pensions the number of officers, nurses, and men, respectively, in receipt of conditional pensions; how many of these have been in force for four years or more; and if he will consider the desirability of granting permanent pensions at the present rate to such pensioners as have been in receipt of a conditional pension for four years or more?
§ Major TRYON
The number of conditional pensions in payment to officers, nurses and men on the 30th September were, respectively, about 9,000, 500 and 150,000. In the large majority of these cases pensions have been in force for four years or more. I fully appreciate the desirability of making final awards as soon as this can fairly be done in these cases, but to make such awards on the lines suggested by the hon. Member, without further medical consideration of the individual cases, would not be in the best interests of pensioners.
§ Major McLEAN
May I ask the Minister of Pensions if it is not a fact that the question of final awards was settled by the Government of hon. Gentlemen oposite?
§ Major TRYON
The whole system of final awards was undoubtedly challenged by the Opposition, but the previous decision of the House of Commons was maintained, and this has enabled me to give security of assessment for life to more than 37,000 pensioners since the decision was reaffirmed by this House.