HC Deb 15 December 1954 vol 535 cc1763-4
23. Mr. Driberg

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he has now considered the reply from the hon. Member for Maldon to his letter of 16th November, 1954, on the question of gratuities to officers employed under contract in British Guiana; and if, in view of the ambiguous and misleading character of some of the relevant sections of the pamphlet R.D.W.6 and the fact that contracts were entered into by some officers under a genuine misapprehension, he will reconsider this matter sympathetically.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I have considered the hon. Member's letter of 23rd November. I cannot agree with him that the pamphlet R.D.W.6 was misleading or ambiguous, and I have myself no evidence of any officers having entered into contracts under a genuine misapprehension.

Mr. Driberg

Does the right hon. Gentleman agree that the general tenor of that section of the pamphlet to which I referred him is that a gratuity is clearly implied, whereas the single sentence to which he referred me contains no reference to a gratuity or to there not being a gratuity? Since, as he himself has said, only one or two people are concerned, if it can be shown that there is a genuine misapprehension, will he look at the matter again?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I cannot agree that it was not made quite plain that that form of contract might be varied in individual cases, but if the hon. Member will let me know the names of the individuals concerned, I will certainly look at the matter again from the beginning.