HC Deb 27 June 1951 vol 489 cc1364-5
34. Mr. Geoffrey Cooper

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation in view of the International Civil Aviation Organisation Assembly meeting just terminated and the fact that the Treasury was consulted with regard to Great Britain's contribution to the $84,000 retirement payment to the Secretary-General, what instructions were given to the British representative of International Civil Aviation Organisation as to the attitude which he should take with regard to some revision or reduction of this $84,000 payment; and what is the proposed date of retirement.

Mr. Beswick

This matter was settled at the Assembly of 1950, which awarded the Secretary-General a retiring gratuity of $17,875 Canadian, being one year's salary, and an annuity of $4,800 involving a capital value of $63,000. The United Kingdom contribution is less than 10 per cent. and our representatives supported the resolution which was carried unanimously after taking account of Dr. Roper's 30 years of service to international civil aviation as Secretary-General to the International Commission for Air Navigation and the International Civil Aviation Organisation. No further instructions were required or given for the 1951 Assembly.

As regards the second part of the Question, the Secretary-General was due to retire on 21st April, 1951, on reaching the age of 60. but as the Council has not yet chosen a successor he has agreed to remain in post for the time being.

Mr. Cooper

In view of the recent declaration of redundancies from this organisation of men of undoubted capacity without any compensation, does my hon. Friend think that this retirement payment is justified? If I bring to his notice evidence that has just come to me showing the real cause for the retirement of the Secretary-General, will my hon. Friend look into it with a view to giving instructions to the British representative to have some review made?

Mr. Beswick

The answer to the first part of that supplementary question is "Yes, Sir"; otherwise our representatives would not have agreed to it. With regard to the second part, if my hon. Friend will let me have the information I will look at it, though I am inclined to the view that there will be a difference of opinion as to the facts.