HC Deb 28 November 1933 vol 283 cc691-2

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether it is proposed to review the case of the civilian war claimants, in view of the fact that out of £5,000,000 voted by Parliament in 1920 for the payment of claims assessed by the Sumner Commission only £4,004,287 has up to the present., been paid out?


The answer is in the negative. The claimants in question have received ex-gratia compensation on the scale recommended by the Sumner Commission. The total sum paid out, including payments in respect of belated claims, was £4,939,770. A sum of £640,740 was recovered from claimants who received compensation from an alternative source under the treaty with Turkey, but, as my hon. Friend will realise, that sum and any sums unspent from Parliamentary Votes have long since been surrendered to the Exchequer. His Majesty's Government are not prepared to ask Parliament to vote fresh moneys for this service.


Is it not a fact that a balance of £996,000 still stands to the credit of this account? Further, were not cases of compensation in full, admitted as a first charge on reparations by the late Prime Minister, the right hon. Member for Carnarvon Boroughs (Mr. Lloyd George), and also by the then Financial Secretary to the Treasury in 1922?


No, Sir. I think I am right in saying that there is no account in existence at present. Five million pounds was voted and of that £4,900,000 odd have been spent, but this was disposed of 10 years ago.


Is it not the fact whether we agree with the hon. Member as to the sources of the money or not that Parliament voted £5,000,000, and that £5,000,000 has not been spent because the Government received £700,000 from another source?


It has been spent in the way the Commission recommended.