HC Deb 01 May 1952 vol 499 cc1629-30
4. Mr. T. Driberg

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations what further discussions have now taken place between the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations and the delegation from the Bamangwato Tribe; if he is now satisfied that there are precedents in the recent history of this Tribe for marriage by its chief without previous consultation with the Tribe: and if he will make a statement.

Mr. J. Foster

In answer to the first part of the Question, I would refer the hon. Member to my reply on 29th April to a Question by the right hon. Member for Smethwick (Mr. Gordon Walker).

As regards the second part of the Question, I am satisfied that there is no precedent for a chief of the Bamangwato Tribe marrying a principal wife without consulting the Tribe.

Mr. Driberg

Since the debate that we had last night is not yet reported in HANSARD and many hon. Members will, therefore, not know what was said, unless they go to the Library to look up the typescript—[HON. MEMBERS: "Question."]—this is all part of my question, if hon. Members will not be impatient; that was a subsidiary clause—can the hon. and learned Gentleman say whether he has had time this morning to ascertain the full facts about Khama III's various marriages, on which he was not altogether informative in the House two days ago?

Mr. Foster

I have not had time to look into the point raised by the hon. Gentleman, but, of course, the arguments that I advanced at 12.16 this morning still hold good.