HC Deb 25 May 1943 vol 389 cc1397-8
26. Mr. Gallacher

asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs on what grounds "Inkululeko," official organ of the Communist Party of South Africa, is prohibited from entering the Protectorates of Basutoland, Bechuanaland and Swaziland; on what grounds the request by the Communist Party of South Africa for an interview with the High Commissioner for the Protectorates, in order to appeal against the ban, was refused; and whether, in view of the fact that "Inkululeko" is not restricted anywhere in the Union of South Africa, he will take steps to see that this prohibition is removed?

The Under-Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs (Mr. Emrys-Evans)

I am informed that the entry of this paper into the territories mentioned was originally prohibited by the Resident Commissioners, with the approval of the then High Commissioner, because of articles which had appeared in 1940 calculated to hamper the war effort. Though the views expressed in the paper have in some respects altered since the entry of Russia into the war, the High Commissioner feels that certain of the policies which it advocates are likely to be misunderstood by rural natives and cause unrest during the war. The High Commissioner thought it unnecessary to grant an interview to the Communist Party in South Africa in order to discuss the matter since it could suitably be dealt with by correspondence.

Mr. Gallacher

Is the hon. Gentleman not aware that in general the natives will be more capable of understanding the message in this paper than is the High Commissioner, and will he not use his influence to get the paper into the hands of the natives?

Mr. Emrys-Evans

No, Sir.

Sir H. Williams

Does the hon. Gentleman make that statement on the ground that the natives cannot read the paper?

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