HC Deb 10 May 1950 vol 475 c384
63. Mr. Sorensen

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies to what extent the cotton crop in Northern Nigeria has been held up through inadequate transport facilities; and what steps have been taken to improve transport facilities both on road and rail.

The Minister of State for the Colonies (Mr. John Dugdale)

Transport of seed cotton to the ginneries would be improved by better roads and the Nigerian Government have a programme of road construction and improvement in hand in this Region. Rail transport for the ginned cotton lint should now be adequate. There has, however, been some fall in railings recently through severe shortage of water for locomotives at the end of the dry season.

Mr. Sorensen

Can my right hon. Friend say exactly what proportion of the cotton crop it has not been possible to transport through bad facilities, and when those facilities are likely to be restored?

Mr. Dugdale

I think it will be very soon indeed. The amount of the cotton bears a very small relation to the total amount of goods transported on the railway. I think it will be transported reasonably soon.