HC Deb 30 November 1938 vol 342 cc400-1
31. Mr. Banfield

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what action he proposes to take to give effect to the recommendations of Major Orde Browne regarding native labour conditions in Northern Rhodesia?

The Secretary of State for the Colonies (Mr. Malcolm MacDonald)

Proposals for the appointment of a Labour Commissioner and of labour officers, as recommended by Major Orde Browne, have been submitted to me by the Governor, and provision for this purpose is being made in the 1939 Estimates. A labour officer of Northern Rhodesia in Southern Rhodesia has been appointed. The arrangements for recruiting from Barotseland on the lines proposed by Major Orde Browne have formed the subject of discussions between the Governor of Northern Rhodesia and representatives of the Witwatersrand Mines. These, and the other recommendations and suggestions put forward in Major Orde Browne's valuable report, are receiving active consideration.

Mr. Banfield

Is it intended to set up a new labour Department to deal with these matters in view of the report and other statements which are calculated to raise disquiet?

Mr. MacDonald

I have said that the appointment of these officers is receiving consideration.

Mr. Creech Jones

When considering these recommendations will the right hon. Gentleman keep in mind the great feeling there is that the penal sanctions should be abolished?

Mr. MacDonald

The whole question of penal sanctions is under consideration at the present moment.