HC Deb 01 August 1957 vol 574 cc1498-9
21. Mrs. Castle

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he will make a further statement on the case of Njau Kariuki.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I have already placed a copy of the judgment in this case in the Library. In addition to the five convictions in the Jasiel Njau case there were 37 other convictions of detainees, all for common assault, arising out of incidents which occurred at Gathigiriri Camp on 25th January. Of these, 12 of the accused were sentenced to ten weeks' imprisonment with hard labour, 24 to six weeks' imprisonment with hard labour and one was discharged under Section 36 of the Penal Code.

Mrs. Castle

Does not this reveal that there has been the most unsatisfactory state of affairs in this camp for a very long time? Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us whether the statement which he has placed in the Library includes the report of the disciplinary inquiry into the conduct of the commandant of the camp in not stopping assaults earlier? If it does not, will he say when that report will be available and will he be good enough to send me personally a copy of it?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

The hon. Lady ought to see this in perspective. As the sentences suggest, these were only very minor cases of assault. The hon. Lady knows enough about the conditions and the type of men who are detained not to regard this as very, very serious. She asked about the disciplinary inquiry. The inquiry under the Solicitor-General has now been completed and the report is being prepared for submission to the Governor-in-Council-of-Ministers. The Governor will let me know his intentions after he has considered the report. The report is made to the Governor-in-Council, and I do not propose to publish it.

Mr. Paget

When the right hon. Gentleman says that these were minor offences, is he aware that the offence was that hard-core detainees in this camp who did not confess were tied by their hands some three feet from the ground and flogged with strips of rubber cut from tyres until they did confess? Is this a minor assault?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I was dealing with minor injuries. Only minor injuries were inflicted. The hon. Lady should not thaw from that the belief that there was widespread violence and cruelty at this camp.

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