23. Mr. Philips Price
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what representations he has received from the Aden Association concerning a constitution for the Aden territory; and whether he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Lennox-Boyd
A letter presented by the Aden Association to my noble Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State during his recent visit to Aden included various proposals for constitutional advance both in the short and the long term. My noble Friend discussed these proposals in Aden and left it for the Governor to have further talks regarding the next constitutional steps with the leaders of the association and other members of Legislative Council, who are not yet in complete agreement on the proposals to be made to Her Majesty's Government, but I hope that following on discussions which are continuing the new Governor may be in a position to submit proposals, within a reasonable time after he has assumed office.
In view of our large oil refining interests in the Aden territories, would it not be desirable to take the relatively moderate, if not entirely practicable, proposals of the Aden Association very seriously in order to obviate the danger of the Aden people listening to the poisonous propaganda of Colonel Nasser and his agents?
§ Mr. Janner
When considering the matter, will the right hon. Gentleman keep in mind the fact that the minorities should be looked after when any council is set up under the new constitution? May we be assured that in future we shall not again have the unhappy experience of a small community which has been 1423 considerably reduced in numbers in consequence of pogroms not being represented on a legislative council, if such a council exists?