HC Deb 20 June 1956 vol 554 cc1424-5
31. Mr. Rankin

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he will make a statement on the plan of the Government of Tanganyika to lease 70,000 acres of land in Kilombero Valley, Morgoro District, to a South African company; and if he is aware of African objections to South Africans entering Tanganyika.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

Negotiations are proceeding for the formation in Tanganyika of a public company registered and operating under Tanganyika law to establish a large scale sugar project in the territory. The scheme would involve the grant by the Tanganyika Government to the company of a right of occupancy for 99 years over an area of approximately 60,000 acres in the Kiberege area in the vicinity of the Kilombero Valley. Investigations have indicated that this area is particularly suitable for sugar cane cultivation.

If negotiations were successful, a large part of the capital required would be provided by a company at present domiciled in South Africa. Any undertakings given by the Tanganyika Government would be subject to prior approval by the Legislative Council, where any African objections could be voiced. Entry of non-Africans to the territory is governed by the immigration law.

Mr. Rankin

Will the Secretary of State remember that the Africans in Tanganyika object to this scheme because of the vicious segregation policies pursued by the South African Government? Will the right hon. Gentleman take that fact into consideration and use his influence to ensure that there is no colour bar created in Tanganyika by this company?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

No such bar would be tolerated, but I must make it clear that we welcome outside investment in Tanganyika where, quite apart from our duty under the Trusteeship agreement, we recognise our obligation to see the country developed.

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