HC Deb 03 July 1935 vol 303 cc1843-4
9. Mr. LUNN

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether, seeing that there are more registered mui-tsai in Malaya, than in Hong-Kong, that in Malaya there is only one lady inspector for the Singapore and Penang Islands, respectively, as compared with one whole-time inspector for a smaller area and number of mui-tsai in Hong-Kong, and that there are other parts of Malaya, without any inspectors whatever, he will consider the importance of appointing forth with a sufficient number of suitably paid whole-time inspectors to supervise the registered and unregistered mui-tsai wherever mui-tsai in any numbers are held by their owners in these territories?

The SECRETARY of STATE for the COLONIES (Mr. Malcolm MacDonald)

It has hitherto been held that although special inspectors are required in Penang and Singapore, elsewhere in Malaya the duties can adequately be carried out by the officers of the Chinese Protectorate Department, who are specially charged with the administration of the mui-tsai legislation. But I propose to consult the High Commissioner for the Malay States with regard to the hon. Member's suggestion.


Is there a system of mui-tsai registration in Malaya similar to that in Hong Kong; why are there not more inspectors than there are at present, and is it the policy of the Government to abolish mui-tsai in Malaya as in Hong Kong?


The answer to the last part of the question is in the affirmative, and there is a system of registration in Malaya. Officers of the Chinese Protectorate Department who, as I have already said, are charged with the duty and have the powers of inspection, are considered to be adequate in number, and we feel that the inspections have, so far, been satisfactory.


After the right hon. Gentleman has consulted the authorities in Malaya upon this matter, may I be informed of what is taking place?

Mr. MacDONALD indicated assent.