HC Deb 17 April 1947 vol 436 cc339-40
71. Mr. Gammans

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he is aware that Mr. Robert Eisinger, a Polish subject married to an Englishwoman and at present resident in this country, has been informed that he must go to Singapore before he can apply for British citizenship; and if, in view of the fact that Mr. Eisinger has no job or house there and no money for the journey and that a grant of British citizenship there would automatically enable him to return to this country, he will give instructions that the application should be considered here, so as to save time, expense and a needless passage.

Mr. Oliver

This man represented that he wanted to pay a temporary visit to this country and would then return to Malaya; and my right hon. Friend cannot accept the argument that if a foreigner is admitted to this country for a temporary visit he must be allowed to stop here until he has a sufficient period of residence to enable him to apply for naturalisation. If, however, it appears that this visitor can make any useful contribution to our national economy, my right hon. Friend would be prepared to consider extending his stay.

Mr. Gammans

Is the Minister aware that this man is married to an English woman? Will he please tell the House what useful purpose is gained in making him go back to Singapore, at Government expense, to secure British citizenship, which will enable him automatically to return to this country?

Mr. Oliver

I think the hon. Member is labouring under a delusion, because if this man applied for naturalisation either here or in Malaya or Singapore, it would not necessarily follow that he would get it.

Mr. Gammans

Is the hon. Member aware that this man has been informed that if he chooses to go back to Singapore, which would be at Government expense, he will be granted naturalisation?

Mr. Oliver

No, I have not that information.

Mr. S. Silverman

Will my hon. Friend consult His Majesty's Ambassador in Moscow as to the desirability in general of allowing husbands and wives to live together in the same country?

Viscount Hinchingbrooke

What are the principles which guide the right hon. Gentleman in deciding whether a man makes a useful contribution to the community or not?

Mr. Hector Hughes

Upon what basis is the condition on aliens that they shall not work imposed? Is it not damaging to the country, and why should they not be allowed to produce?

Mr. Oliver

It does not arise out of this Question, but people who come here for a temporary purpose as a general rule are not permitted to work, and if they want to come here to obtain employment, that is generally done through the Ministry of Labour.