HC Deb 13 July 1949 vol 467 cc411-2
18. Mr. Erroll

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what decisions have been taken in regard to the future of the Alake of Abeokuta.

Mr. Rees-Williams

The Alake, who abdicated on 31st December, 1948, is now living as a private person in Oshogbo.

Mr. Erroll

Can the hon. Gentleman give an assurance that the Alake will be allowed to spend his declining years in peace and free from molestation?

Mr. Rees-Williams

So far as I am concerned yes.

Mr. Rankin

Apart from the problems which may be associated with the individual in this case, does my hon. Friend realise that there is a problem associated with the office itself? Will he tell us whether or not, instead of restoring the autocratic powers of the paramount chief, he will consider some form of democratic control?

Mr. Rees-Williams

The present position is that the Egba Central Government have been appointed as native authority in place of the Alake. How far it can be considered a fully democratic authority, I do not know, but there is a move in that direction.