HC Deb 20 May 1947 vol 437 cc2150-1
2. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Minister of Pensions, in view of the further facts sent to him concerning the pensions appeal of Mr. Alexander Johnston, late R.A.F., of Hayton, Aberdeen, if he will now have his case re-opened and re-considered with a view to his pension being allowed.

Mr. J. Hynd

I have received the further medical evidence, but I think it desirable to await a High Court judgment now pending on a similar case before reaching a decision. In the event of rejection being maintained, Mr. Johnston's case will be referred to the Special Review Tribunal.

Mr. Hughes

If there is reasonable doubt in the case, is it not the practice of the Minister to give the benefit of it to the patient?

Mr. Hynd

Invariably we give the benefit of the doubt to the patients. In this case there is no reasonable doubt, but, in the man's own interests, we are awaiting the results of the test case.

Mr. Driberg

Can my hon. Friend say whether this man's appeal was rejected by an appeal tribunal; if so, whether that rejection was unanimous, and, if not, whether he will have it reconsidered in the light of Mr. Justice Denning's recent judgment?

Mr. Hynd

The case has already been rejected, but it has been put to us for reconsideration. On the present basis it is not admissible. But, as I say, in the man's own interests we are awaiting the High Court judgment.