HC Deb 04 February 1942 vol 377 c1179
41. Mr. Creech Jones

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies for what reason all recruitment for the African military labour, pioneer and transport corps in East Africa has been suspended?

Mr. George Hall

By agreement between the local civil and military authorities, recruitment for the East African Military Labour Service has been temporarily suspended in Kenya in order to avoid competition from the Forces for the African labour required for the programme of increased production for war purposes.

Mr. Creech Jones

May I ask my hon. Friend whether this decision can be considered in the light of events in Malaya, where it has been complained that we have not had the full co-operation of the Colonial peoples during the Japanese aggression? May I also ask whether the estimates of the white farmers were taken, and whether in considering those estimates due regard was had to the possibility of effecting economies in regard to the use of black labour?

Mr. Hall

This matter had better be left to the civil and military authorities, who know all the circumstances. They have decided on the lines set out in the reply.