HC Deb 03 December 1962 vol 668 cc942-1076

3.53 p.m.

Mr. Denis Healey (Leeds, East)

I beg to move, That this House regrets the failure of Her Majesty's Government to revise its policies in Central Africa in accordance with the wishes of the population, and calls upon Her Majesty's Government to dissolve the present Federation and to promote constitutional reforms in the three territories so that they may achieve early independence under representative democratic governments. I understand that in reply to this Motion, which appears in the names of my right hon. Friend the Leader of the Opposition and various of my hon. Friends, the First Secretary of State is shortly to move an Amendment which asks us to welcome the constitutional progress in Nyasaland, to take note of the fact that elections are pending in Northern and Southern Rhodesia and to endorse Her Majesty's Government's continuing efforts to promote a constructive solution to the problem of the future association of the territories in Central Africa. Once again, we are to have an Amendment which has been drafted with characteristic ambiguity by the right hon. Gentleman himself. It voices some unexceptionable sentiments, it asks us to take note of things which we all know to be happening and it then asks us to support the Government's policy without giving the slightest indication of what it is.

We on this side are delighted that Dr. Banda and the First Secretary have agreed to further constitutional progress, but we deeply regret that although it is a year since the Malawi Congress won an overwhelming victory in the elections in Nyasaland on a programme which, the Foreign Secretary concedes, constitutes a mandate for secession, Her Majesty's Government apparently still have no measures in mind which would allow Dr. Banda to carry out his mandate.

The First Secretary of State asks us to take note of the fact that elections are to take place in the other two territories under new constitutions. This is meant to persuade us, I suppose, that the new Constitutions in Northern Rhodesia and Southern Rhodesia represent a step forward, in the same sense as the new Constitution just adopted for Nyasaland. I suppose it also implies that we would be unwise to ask for more until the elections under these new Constitutions are over. I doubt whether anybody on this side of the House could follow the right hon. Gentleman here.

To begin with, let us look at the new Constitutions to which the right hon. Gentleman draws our attention. The new Constitution for Southern Rhodesia was forced through Parliament just over a year ago in the face of overwhelming opposition from the African population of Southern Rhodesia and in the face of united opposition from the parties sitting on this side of the House. Indeed, I note that at least one hon. Member of the party opposite has had the courage to say to his constituents that he regrets the vote which he cast for the Government on that occasion more than any other vote he has ever cast in his life. Under the new Constitution, Her Majesty's Government gave up vital powers to implement their responsibilities to the population of Southern Rhodesia in return for a charter of human rights which has already been made a mockery in the territory concerned.

The First Secretary asks us to take note of the elections which are being held next week under the new Constitution. These elections offer the African population of Southern Rhodesia—which outnumbers the white population by 17 to 1—a chance of winning under one seat in four. The only party which represents the African majority in Southern Rhodesia has been banned and its leaders are in restriction. Of the 50,000 Africans whom Sir Edgar Whitehead, the territorial Prime Minister, said qualified for the vote, under 10,000 have registered and it is doubtful whether more than a few hundred will choose to cast their vote.

The election to which the right hon. Gentleman directs our attention, which takes place in a few days' time in Southern Rhodesia, is, and will be, as meaningless as the Federal election which took place last February, in which the Federal Prime Minister was confirmed in office by 10,000 votes in a population which numbers 9 million.

The right hon. Gentleman also asks us to take note—and, I presume, to applaud—the new Constitution of Northern Rhodesia and to wait for the elections there, too. This new Constitution has, however, already been proved a total failure. The vital elections under it have already been held. Nearly one-quarter of the seats remain unfilled and are likely to remain unfilled after the by-elections which will take place next week. The result of the general election already held is a deliberate distortion of the people's will. The party which won two-thirds of the votes has obtained only one-third of the seats. On the other hand, the voting pattern in the Northern Rhodesian election provides us all with indispensable evidence of popular feeling in Northern Rhodesia, which Her Majesty's Government can ignore only at their grave peril.

In another place, the noble Lord, Lord Salisbury, described the Constitution of Northern Rhodesia—or, rather, described the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, who was responsible for this Constitution—as being too clever by half. In fact, it proved to be not half clever enough. Its original purpose was to produce a Legislative Council in which the Africans could predominate only if they were in alliance with the Liberal Party. The actual result of the Constitution has been to annihilate the Liberal Party which has since disbanded itself entirely.

The general aim of this Constitution as it was put to us first by the Leader of the House in the two versions which he presented to us, and, secondly, by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in the third version under which the elections were actually held, was to encourage what was called non-racial voting. But in fact, whether we like it or not, the election held under the Constitution has exposed this non-racial conception as a dream; however noble the conception, a dream.

As a result, two years after the Mona tan Commission recommended that there should be an African majority in the Legislature of Northern Rhodesia, there is still no African majority. The warnings uttered by my hon. Friend the Member for Cardiff, South-East (Mr. Callaghan), and by myself, have proved true.

There is no reason to think that the by-elections to be held next week will change the result, but there are some very important lessons to be drawn from the voting which actually took place, even though the franchise was restricted, even though there were dual rolls, even though the constitution was deliberately designed to distort the will of the people of Northern Rhodesia.

I direct the right hon. Gentleman's attention to three features of the election. In the first place, the United National Independence Party, under the leadership of Mr. Kenneth Kaunda, emerged head and shoulders above all other parties as representative of the inhabitants of the territory concerned. It received nearly two-thirds of the total votes cast in the election and it obtained 78.2 per cent. of the votes cast on the lower and more representative roll.

In the second place, U.N.I.P. and the African National Congress, which also fought the election in search of a mandate against federation, won 80 per cent. of the total votes in the three different voting blocks, and the anti-federation parties got nearly 30 per cent. of the total votes even on the upper roll, which was almost exclusively European. There could not be a clearer mandate against the continuation of the Federation than that.

In the third place, I direct the right hon. Gentleman's attention to a matter of the greatest importance. We have been told a great deal in the past by right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite about the desire of the people of Barotseland for separation from the rest of Northern Rhodesia. This myth has formed the basis of innumerable plans for partitioning Northern Rhodesia when the Federation finally breaks up.

What happened? Although U.N.I.P. had only six months in which to organise support in Barotseland, and in spite of the tremendous tribal authority of the chiefs in that territory, U.N.I.P. got over 90 per cent. of the votes. In Western Barotseland, on the lower roll, U.N.I.P. got 688 votes to the 42 which were cast for the Barotseland National Party, the party of the local chiefs. In Eastern Barotseland, on the lower roll, U.N.I.P. got 1,507 votes against only 65 votes cast for the Barotseland National Party.

I should like to ask the right hon. Gentleman whether, in view of these dramatic results in Barotseland, in the Northern Rhodesian elections, he will now agree not to consider any proposal for partitioning Northern Rhodesia when he comes to consider that territory's future. Many of us were rather disturbed when he told us in the last debate in May that although he was not prepared to commit himself to the so-called Dominion Party plan, he was prepared to look at variants of that plan. I hope that he will at least lay to rest the serious concern which is felt throughout the African population of Northern Rhodesia by telling us unequivocally that in view of the clear demonstration of opinion of the people of Barotseland in these elections, he rules any such proposal completely out of court.

Many on both sides of the House will deeply regret the evidence produced in these elections that non-racialism is not, whether we like it or not, a political possibility in the politics of Northern Rhodesia at the present time. Many of us who have known Sir John Moffat and his friends will deeply regret the disappearance of the Liberal Party from the political scene in Northern Rhodesia. But all of us who feel like this about the disappearance of non-racialism as a factor in Northern Rhodesia must at least applaud the heroic efforts made by U.N.I.P., under Mr. Kenneth Kaunda, to try to make non-racialism a reality.

If non-racialism has failed in Northern Rhodesia, the fault unquestionably lies with the European rather than with the African. Mr. Kaunda spoke to white audiences in the heart of the Copperbelt. His men canvassed European homes. There was no attempt whatever made by representatives of the United Federal Party to do likewise so far as the Africans were concerned. I am told that not one European candidate of the United Federal Party spoke to an African meeting in an African township; and, in fact, the main function of the newspapers supporting the United Federal Party in the elections was deliberately to inflame racial fear of the African in the European population. The result was that even so respected a man as Sir Stewart Gore-Browne was able to obtain only 55 European votes in a constituency in which there were 5,000 European voters.

There may well be, as I have said, deep disappointment on both sides of the House at the collapse of the nonracial idea in Northern Rhodesia, but there is no doubt whatever where the blame, if blame there is, must lie. Nevertheless, I believe that Mr. Kaunda can win the confidence of the European population in Northern Rhodesia if he is given a chance. The only people who can give him that chance are the right hon. Gentleman and Her Majesty's Government in general.

We in Britain are extremely fortunate that the African Nationalist Movement in Northern Rhodesia is led by a man of courage, integrity and wisdom such as Mr. Kaunda has displayed throughout his political Career, and I pray that the right hon. Gentleman will so conduct his responsibilities in the territory as to make it possible for such a man to remain the leader of African opinion. I believe that Mr. Kaunda has shown his real stature by his immediate attempts, when feeling was still inflamed by harsh things said in all quarters during the election, to heal the breach inside the African nationalist movement by coming to agreement with the African National Congress led by Mr. Nkumbula. Let me say here that I believe that Mr. Nkumbula, too, deserves great credit for his evident readiness to try to reach agreement with Mr. Kaunda. It is sometimes more difficult to make a compromise from a position of weakness than from a position of strength.

I believe that both these men are deeply concerned that their people shall not follow the unhappy pattern set by the people of Kenya in recent months. I believe they are deeply conscious of the need for the African nationalist movement to remain united before and after independence. I think that provided Her Majesty's Government rise to their responsibilities there is every chance that the new leaders of Northern Rhodesia will remain united during the very testing time which undoubtedly lies ahead for them as well as for us, and that this territory will ultimately achieve independence as a stable society.

The elections in Northern Rhodesia have shown, in the first place, overwhelming support for U.N.I.P. and, secondly, even greater support for secession. This has already been recognised by wise men on the spot. One of the most striking developments in the last week or two has been the fact that Mr. Tshombe, Prime Minister of Katanga as he calls himself, is coming to terms with the African leaders in Northern Rhodesia and is beginning to recognise that his alliance with the Federal Prime Minister, Sir Roy Welensy, is a broken reed. When will the right hon. Gentleman and Her Majesty's Government show the same wisdom and come to terms with the same facts?

It seems to me that perhaps the right hon. Gentleman is nerving himself to do the right thing in Nyasaland. He told the conference which took place a week or so ago, in Lancaster House: In this constitution we shall be transferring, as is right and proper, the substance of political power to the African people in Nyasaland. If that is right and proper in Nyasaland, surely it is right and proper in Northern Rhodesia.

One of the things which we admire most about the right hon. Gentleman is his ability to sidle off in opposite directions at the same time without any apparent feeling of inconsistency. I know that he is a man of flesh and blood, but in his political career he gives the impression of being made of ectoplasm. I believe that if he is to be consistent with himself in Central Africa, he must recognise in his behaviour and policy in Northern Rhodesia the same principles which he seems to be prepared to recognise in his policy in Nyasaland.

I suggest that there are four steps which the First Secretary should take immediately. First, he should instruct the Governor of Northern Rhodesia to form an interim administration which reflects the will of the people of Northern Rhodesia as expressed in the voting. As I have said, two years have already passed since Lord Monckton's Commission told us that it was necessary to have an African administration in Northern Rhodesia. There is no excuse whatever, in the light of opinion as revealed in the elections, for any further delay.

Secondly, I believe that the right hon. Gentleman must immediately call constitutional talks the aim of which will be to produce a constitution which makes it possible for a solid African majority to take their seats in the Legislative Council and in the Administration; a constitution with no more trick block voting and no fancy franchise which can be understood by African and European alike as making it possible for the people of Northern Rhodesia to express their will through the ballot box.

I believe that the right hon. Gentleman must, in the light of opinion as revealed in the Northern Rhodesian elections, institute an urgent programme for training Africans to take over political and administrative responsibility in the territory. Nothing shows the pathetic inadequacy of the Government's readiness to face the facts in Central Africa than their total failure to prepare the people of Northern Rhodesia for what they must know to be the inevitable.

The other day, I asked the right hon. Gentleman if he could say how many Africans he was training for administrative posts in Northern Rhodesia. The answer was that there are three Africans on administrative courses in Britain. It is hoped to raise this to nine next year. There is also some training being done on the spot. I hope that when the right hon. Gentleman, as we are told, meets Mr. Kaunda and Mr. Nkumbula tomorrow he will be able to assure them that, in the light of African feeling as expressed in the election, he will be prepared to consider instituting a crash programme for the training of Africans for responsibilities to which they must certainly come in the next year or two.

The scale of the problem and the immensity of past neglect are shown by the fact that in 1955, the last year for which I have been able to obtain figures, only 45,000 Africans in the whole of the territory were getting more than four years' education and that only 47 had two years in the sixth form.

But, of course, the key issue is whether the Government will enable the African leaders to carry out the mandate which they have received for secession from the Federation. The right hoe. Gentleman told us on 8th May that any association which is to last must be acceptable to the territories concerned and must be based on the good will of their peoples. I can forgive him for avoiding so important a decision when he was new to the job, but seven months have passed since then. He has made a personal visit to all three territories concerned. He has sent out men of out- standing ability, like Sir Roger Stevens, Professor Brown and Sir Ralph Hone, to advise him on the issue. He has already acknowledged the mandate received by the Malawi Congress in Nyasaland to secede. U.N.I.P. and A.N.C. have received an equally unequivocal mandate in Northern Rhodesia

The right hon. Gentleman must now grasp the nettle. There is no reason to think that if he delays any longer the opposition of European leaders on the spot, or of his own bank benchers, will be in any way diminished, but there is every reason to believe that if he continues to play for time and is prepared to allow further delay he will undermine the position of the moderate African leaders and will be responsible for a real risk of violence and bloodshed which at present does not exist, but which easily could exist if he continues to defy the evidence provided of what the people in the territory really want.

I know that many people—some on this side of the House and probably most on the other side of the House—feel that it is a tragedy that the Federation has failed. But I do not believe that anyone, if he looks into his heart of hearts, sail believes that the Federation can survive in the face of all the evidence of profound, consistent opposition to the Federation by the overwhelming majority of its inhabitants. Certainly, the First Secretary cannot now maintain that there is any possibility of the Federation surviving in the light of what he himself has told us, namely, that any future association must depend on the consent of the inhabitants of the territories concerned.

Mr. Anthony Fell (Yarmouth)

The hon. Gentleman has just said against "all the evidence". Does not he even pay the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia the courtesy that at least what he says is part of the evidence?

Mr. Healey

The hon. Gentleman has as much trouble with semantics as he has with politics. I said that all the evidence is that the Federation is unacceptable to the vast majority of its inhabitants. This evidence has been provided by elections in Nyasaland and in Northern Rhodesia and by the refusal of the majority of the community in Southern Rhodesia to participate. That is exactly what I said.

Mr. Fell

Look at HANSARD tomorrow.

Mr. Healey

According to Sir Roy Welensky, who appears to be better informed on these matters than we are in this House, the First Secretary already has it in mind to allow Nyasaland to secede. If this is the case, I hope that he will say so in this debate. I do not see any reason for concealing it any longer from the House. Indeed, we will welcome it with open arms if the right hon. Gentleman is prepared to give us this good news this afternoon.

If the First Secretary is prepared to accept Nyasaland's right to secede and to introduce the necessary legislation in this House next year, as I sincerely hope he is, he must offer the same right to Northern Rhodesia. Secession from the Federation need not imply political independence in either case. I believe that Dr. Banda is perfectly prepared for Nyasaland to have a further period of self-government before independence provided she gets the right to secede from the Federation right away. I believe that the same is true of Northern Rhodesia.

I warn the right hon. Gentleman—he must know this because he must have been told it by his three advisers, and I hope that he was able to discover it for himself when he made his visit to the Federation six months ago—there is no chance whatever that the future African leaders of Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia will consider economic co-operation with one another, and certainly with Southern Rhodesia, till the political bond which now binds them together against their will is abolished; nor will they consider economic co-operation unless they feel it is consistent with their political aspirations as independent African States.

At the moment, as I think the right hon. Gentleman knows, the responsible African leaders in both Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia are well aware of the advantages to their own peoples of economic co-operation between independent Governments in Central Africa. Dr. Banda has said in public that he will consider a Customs Union with the other territories, but only after secession, and Mr. Kaunda has said that, "You cannot split the Kariba Lake down the middle with a wall, like you can split Berlin."

There is not the slightest doubt that the leaders of African opinion in both the Northern Territories are fully aware of the desirability of economic co-operation, but this readiness to accept economic co-operation in Central Africa may wither very rapidly unless the political conditions which alone can make it possible are implemented quickly, and nobody will suffer worse than the Europeans if, in fact, the disintegration of the Federation is not followed by economic co-operation.

It is perfectly true that the Africans will suffer if there is no co-operation between these three territories, but they will not suffer in anything like the same degree as the Europeans. Only one African out of seven is employed in the European economy and it is essentially to the European economy that, so far, economic co-operation inside the Federation has been relevant.

We must all accept, and, above all, hon. Gentlemen on that side of the House must accept, that Her Majesty's Government carry very great responsibility towards the Europeans in the Central African Federation. After all, it is a fact, which is all too little known, that nearly half the Europeans in the Federation have gone out there since the Conservative Party took power in 1951, encouraged by that party in the belief that the survival of the Federation would give them the chance of permanently preserving the type of privileges which they have enjoyed until now. The Government carry a responsibility here as heavy as they carry in Kenya, that of giving the Europeans the completely false impression of what their lot was likely to be if they went out. There is not the slightest doubt about that.

The Government will now be expected by everybody in Britain and in the Federation to implement this responsibility by doing their best to protect the Europeans on the spot from the worst consequences of the inevitable failure of their own Federation policy, and the first duty of the Government in this case is to tell the Europeans in Central Africa that Federation has failed—no doubt about it whatever—and to tell them, too—and this will be a painful duty—that they cannot hope to maintain the privileges of a master race in an area where they are in a minority of one in thirty, and to tell them that they can hope for a decent standard of life and a fair return on their labour and capital on one condition: provided they accept their status as a minority in an African society. The bulk of Europeans in Southern Rhodesia, of course, never wanted federation anyway. I think that I am right in saying that one-third of them voted against it when it was put to them in 1951 or 1952.

There is an obvious temptation for Her Majesty's Government to buy the consent of the Europeans in Central Africa and of their own back benchers to the disintegration of the Federation by offering Southern Rhodesia independence under a white minority at the same time that they give Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland independence under an African majority. Indeed, this proposal has already been made by the Yorkshire Conservative newspaper, the Yorkshire Post. I tell the right hon. Gentleman, as I told him in July, that it would be a moral crime of the first magnitude to create a new South Africa in Central Africa in this way; but, not only would it be a moral crime, it would be an economic and political catastrophe for the Europeans themselves.

I feel the time has now come when we must talk frankly in this House about the real issues involved in Central Africa and about some of the factors which we have always talked about in private but often felt it was impolite to raise in public. It is no good the right hon. Gentlemen feeling that the Government will escape blame for what follows in Southern Rhodesia if they give Southern Rhodesia independence under a white minority—any more than Pontius Pilate has escaped the blame for the decision he took.

But, more important than whether we carry blame or praise, is the fact that if we took such a step the whole of Africa would combine against the new Central Rhodesian State, and any chance of economic co-operation between Southern Rhodesia, on the one hand, and the African States of Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland, on the other, would disappear for good.

The Europeans' standard of life in Southern Rhodesia has depended on two things. It has depended on subsidies from the United Kingdom, and it has depended on economic integration with Northern Rhodesia. Two-thirds of the debt of Southern Rhodesia was unloaded on the Federation when the Federation came into existence nine years ago. If Southern Rhodesia were under a racialist, white minority, control, without co-operation from Northern Rhodesia, international investment would stream away into Northern Rhodesia, where it saw some prospect of a stable future.

Mr. R. H. Turton (Thirsk and Malton)

Will the hon. Gentleman tell us what subsidies Southern Rhodesia has received from Britain?

Mr. Healey

I shall give a very good example in a moment—the £3½ million loan which the right hon. Gentleman gave to Sir Edgar Whitehead in August this year, a few days after Sir Edgar had announced his intention of introducing police State legislation into the territory. In the interests of the Europeans themselves the Government must maintain their responsibility in Southern Rhodesia and implement it by promoting rapid advance towards African majority rule. One of the queerest things so far as we are concerned, a thing we find it impossible to understand, is the difference between the right hon. Gentleman's language when he talks about our responsibilities when he is talking in the United Nations and when he talks here.

The right hon. Gentleman tells the United Nations again and again—I quote his words—"We cannot share or shift our responsibility in Southern Rhodesia. We cannot surrender or abdicate it." But when we ask him here about the Government's responsibility he tells us, "There is nothing we can do about it. We have no powers whatever. We have no responsibility. It is entirely up to the people on the spot."

If the right hon. Gentleman believes what he told us in the debate in May in the House, that we cannot surrender or abdicate our responsibility in Sourthern Rhodesia, then let him make this specific. Let him publicly declare this afternoon, as I asked him to declare in July, that the Government will not give independence to Southern Rhodesia till there is a Government there which represent the majority of the population.

When I asked the right hon. Gentleman to do this in July he promised to consider it, to look into what he called the juridical aspects. Can he tell us this afternoon what are the results of this consideration? The right hon. Gentleman has done nothing about this. Will he do it now? I understand from what Sir Hugh Foot has said in the newspapers—and he was our representative at the United Nations on Southern Rhodesia until he resigned a few weeks ago—that he had been pressing the right hon. Gentleman to do precisely this thing. I assure the right hon. Gentleman that nothing would do more to create the possibility of some African co-operation in political advance in Southern Rhodesia than a clear, unequivocal, statement by Her Majesty's Government that they are ruling out the possibility of betraying or surrendering their responsibility in Southern Rhodesia, that they will not abandon their responsibility until there is a Government in the territory which represents a majority of the population.

I suggest to the right hon. Gentleman that, having done that, he should begin to fulfil our responsibilities in practice. From earlier debates we are very familiar with the extent to which our juridical rights in Southern Rhodesia are limited, a limitation to a large extent imposed by Her Majesty's Government of their own violition a year ago when they introduced the new Constitution, but we still have the power to suspend the Constitution as we did in British Guiana, and as we did in Granada. We should show at least the same determination to protect people with black skins for whom we are responsible in Southern Rhodesia as Eisenhower showed at Little Rock, or as Kennedy shows today in Mississippi.

When one asks the Government to implement their responsibilities in Southern Rhodesia, the argument always put is that if we do our duty there will be a Carsonite rebellion by the European population in Southern Rhodesia, and they will declare their independence from British sovereignty and set off on their own. I believe that this is an empty threat, and I believe that it should be clearly explained to the Europeans in Southern Rhodesia what a disastrous course this would be for themselves.

Only two countries in the world would recognise such a Government—South Africa and Portugal. The existence of a Government which was illegal from the point of view of every other country in the world would legitimise direct intervention by the United Nations, and by any State in Africa or outside, including Communist States. I cannot believe that if the Europeans in Southern Rhodesia faced the facts on this, instead of murmuring about it in the back rooms of bars, they could possibly believe that this is an option which offers them anything except black disaster.

Mr. Ronald Bell (Buckinghamshire, South)

Would the hon. Gentleman explain how such a Government would be illegal according to the United Nations? What relevance would the Charter have to such a circumstance?

Mr. Healey

Such a Government, not recognised by any other country in the world except perhaps South Africa and Portugal, which had no juridical existence because it came into existence by violating the constitutional sovereignty of the United Kingdom, would be open to any form of intervention by any sort of foreign country at all.

The answer given to this point when it is raised—and I think it is better that these things should be brought out into the open—is, "Oh well, an independent secessionist State of this nature could unite with South Africa". But could it? Is there any evidence that the South African Government would wish to complicate their own problems by taking into their own State an area which would shift the balance not only of African against European in South Africa, but of English against Afrikaaner, a State which would be an exposed salient in a hostile continent, a State which there would be no possibility, in the long run, of rendering viable from the economic point of view, or even defensible from the military point of view?

I believe that these things should be said in public. They have been said often enough in private. I do not believe that this type of option, so often discussed in private by blustering people in Southern Rhodesia, offers the European population of the territory any prospect except disaster. On the other hand, I believe that Her Majesty's Government, despite the limitations on their juridical and even their military power to intervene in South Africa, still possess a most important economic influence on the decisions of the European community there, an influence which will be greater still when Northern Rhodesia is independent.

When we discussed this last in July I asked the First Secretary to make further economic aid to Southern Rhodesia conditional on political advance. He did exactly the opposite. As I have already pointed out in response to an intervention, he gave a £3½ million loan to Sir Edgar Whitehead in August after Sir Edgar had announced his intention of introducing further legislation, which, in the view of the previous Lord Chief Justice in Southern Rhodesia, simply confirmed Southern Rhodesia as a police State, and Sir Edgar Whitehead drew the natural conclusion. He said in public that he regarded the loan as an expression of confidence in his Government and in their policies. Pontius Pilate washed his hands, but he did not provide the wood for the scaffold.

Mr. victor Goodhew (St. Albans)

The hon. Gentleman is having a good time at the expense of Europeans in Southern Rhodesia. Has he ever been there to confirm the impression that he is giving us?

Mr. Healey

No, I have not been there. But I have met many Southern Rhodesians here who have urged me with passion to say what I am now saying to the right hon. Gentleman and to hon. Gentlemen opposite.

Colonel Sir Harwood Harrison (Eye)

The hon. Gentleman has been quoting what has been said in public bars when he himself did not hear what was said.

Mr. Healey

The hon. Gentleman is aware that hon. Members on both sides of the House frequently express views about countries which they have not visited, and frequently are proved right in the views they express.

I have done something which many right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite have not done. I have talked to African Members of Z.A.P.U., to ordinary Africans from Southern Rhodesia who have represented the country, and heard from them at first hand something about how they feel about it, and I suspect that many right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite who have visited Southern Rhodesia have failed to inform themselves in this way of the views of the overwhelming majority of the local population.

It is not surprising that Sir Hugh Foot resigned the responsibility of representing Her Majesty's Government's policy at the United Nations under these circumstances. It is not surprising that the United Nations voted by 84 votes to two—the two being South Africa and Portugal—against the policies which Her Majesty's Government defend and support every time they open their mouths, but it is not too late for the right hon. Gentleman now to try to undo some of the ill that he has done.

I believe that he must, as Sir Hugh Foot has already urged, make a declaration that he will not give independence to Southern Rhodesia until there is a Government there which represents the majority of the population. I believe that he must make it clear, whichever means he chooses, that Her Majesty's Government will give no further economic assistance to Southern Rhodesia until there is some political advance towards majority rule.

Mr. Farey-Jones (Watford)

So far the hon. Gentleman's speech has been a miasma of deliberate misrepresentation. So far his speech has been an attack on the white population in the Rhodesias and Nyasaland. Would he like to tell the House what future the coloured man has in Central Africa without the active cooperation of the white people?

Mr. Healey

The hon. Member has asked me about the coloured man. I would remind him that in a sense the coloured man is the white man, since a white man is the only one whose colour is noticeable to the majority of the population. If he is asking about the African, I believe that the African has the same right of independence, in his own way, in Central Africa as in any other part of Africa, including East and West Africa. I do not believe that the presence of a minority of people with white skins constitutes an argument against giving the Africans the same rights in Central Africa as in East Africa or West Africa—or the same rights as the Asians in India and Malaya.

The fact that Federation has been used as an instrument against African advance in Central Africa is the reason why, from the start, it never had the slightest chance of winning the support of the African population.

I believe that the right hon. Gentleman must do these things: I believe that he must ask Sir Edgar Whitehead to remove the ban on Z.A.P.U. and remove the restriction on its leaders. He should not be satisfied with asking for the release of Mr. Nkomo—Mr. Chikerene and Mr. Nyandoro have now been under restriction for nearly four years, without any public charge having ever been brought against them. Their cases have been reviewed by a secret court, the decisions of which are not subject to appeal or review. It is vitally necessary that these men, as well as Mr. Nkomo and those who were recently restricted with him, should now be allowed to take their natural place in the political life of the territory.

Finally, the right hon. Gentleman must invite European and African leaders to talks with Her Majesty's Government for a new Constitution which will offer the Africans in Southern Rhodesia at least parity with the Europeans.

The right hon. Gentleman told us in July that he was prepared to consider whether there was any way in which he could break the deadlock. I believe that he really agreed that one of the most dangerous facts in Southern Rhodesia is the total breakdown of contacts between the leaders of African opinion and the leaders of European opinion. I appeal to him now to take the initiative. If he wants to wait for another ten days, until the elections are over, let him do so. But we cannot wait any longer than that. There is no other way of avoiding a new Algeria in Southern Rhodesia. Her Majesty's Government have claimed responsibility for Southern Rhodesia in the United Nations, and have said, "We cannot share it". The time has now come when they should carry out that responsibility.

4.42 p.m.

The First Secretary of State (Mr. R. A. Butler)

I beg to move, to leave out from "House" to the end of the Question and to add instead thereof: welcomes the further constitutional progress in Nyasaland as reflected in the agreed Report of the Nyasaland Constitutional Conference, notes that elections under new Constitutions are pending in Northern and Southern Rhodesia, and endorses Her Majesty's Government's continuing efforts to promote a constructive solution to the problem of the future association of the territories in Central Africa". Before I speak in the debate I want to mention—and I am sure that I will have the sympathy of the House in doing so—a tragedy that has happened to a public figure in African life, namely, the death, yesterday, of Mr. Mushonga. He was killed in a motor car accident. This sort of tragedy has happened before. I am sure that the House will support me in extending sympathy to his relatives. I saw him during the Nyasaland Conference, and he had hardly returned before I read of the tragedy.

I shall be dealing with a great deal of what was said by the hon. Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) during the course of my remarks, but if I do not deal with everything perhaps I may, with the permission of the House, be allowed a few minutes at the end of the debate.

We have debated the affairs of Central Africa before—on 8th May—and in spite of the form of the Opposition Motion I welcome the opportunity it affords us to review the present situation and to indicate to the House the approach of Her Majesty's Government to these grave and complex problems. Before I listened to the hon. Member I had no desire to bring any discord into the debate. I hope that none of his observations will promote too much discord in me, but I cannot help saying that I do not think that he has contributed greatly to good feeling in Central Africa by what he has said.

Having examined the Motion, I must confess that I find it very depressing and unconstructive. We are urged to dissolve the present Federation, but we are given no hint that if this were done we should look for some alternative form of association to take its place. We are urged to promote further constitutional developments in the territories in terms which pay scant regard to their political situations and to what has been and is being achieved in the constitutional field. It is in those circumstances that I have moved the Government Amendment.

I have had personally to deal with many intractable problems during the course of my political life. I remember the Indian political settlement, which would have been regarded by many as more complicated than this, owing to the number of creeds and races. I have had to negotiate a religious settlement under the Education Act, 1944, which, at the time, was thought quite impossible to achieve, owing to the extraordinary political convulsions which occurred when it was raised in the time of Mr. Balfour. I have had to deal with many diplomatic problems, but I ask the House to believe that this is the most intractable.

We have three territories—a troika of territories—each at a different stage of pace, training and development. The House should approach the problem with understanding and support, and not with censure. At any rate, that is the impression of the mood which I want to bring to the debate.

I hope that a vote will not be necessary, but if the Opposition do not accept our Amendment we shall certainly vote clown their Motion. I want to make it quite clear that as a Government we intend to continue our efforts to promote solutions that are just, realistic and, above all, constructive. The central core of future associations is the development of the three territories. I shall have something to say about future associations before I sit down. I want, first, to deal with the territories individually, and also to take up some of the points raised by the hon. Member for Leeds, East.

I shall take Nyasaland first. I hope that the House will share with me the pleasure which Her Majesty's Government have felt at the successful outcome of the recent Nyasaland Constitutional Conference. The hon. Member referred to it—I gather with agreement. It is remarkable that such a wide measure of agreement was achieved throughout these long proceedings, and I pay tribute to the realism and statesmanship of the Nyasalanders, of all races, to whom this result is due.

This has brought out the best spirit which has prevailed in our long association of over seventy years with the Protectorate. The Malawi Congress Party won a large victory at the last election—not only in winning all of the lower roll seats but in winning or controlling three out of the eight upper roll seats, which, at the moment, are largely the preserve of non-African voters. This justified bringing into office a largely African Government, who have conducted themselves extremely well and continued to enjoy the confidence of the vast majority of people in the territory, including many of the non-African race.

It was in these circumstances that I was able to contemplate calling for another conference to engage in the task of providing further constitutional advance for the territory. This conference ended, as the White Paper will have shown, with general agreement on a self-governing constitution for the territory. The aspirations of the people of the territory and the experience which the political leadership has now gained justified us in granting self-government for the territory, as has been done with other colonial and dependent territories.

It was further essential, as the conference recognised—and I want to spend a few moments on this, because I think it important—to pay regard to the special circumstances of Nyasaland. There are, therefore, some transitional limitations, particularly in the sphere of finance and the public service, designed to cater for those problems during the next stage.

Under the self-governing Constitution the status of the Executive Council will be raised to that of a Cabinet presided over by a Prime Minister and will cease to be advisory except in regard to those matters for which Her Majesty's Government and the Governor retain responsibility. All of the Ministers in the Cabinet will be unofficials with the exception of the Minister of Finance.

I was particularly glad that the suggestion that the present Financial Secretary should remain as Minister of Finance for the time being should have come from Dr. Banda, and I do not doubt that this, in part, was due to the death of Mr. Chisiza, another prominent African leader who met an untimely end after his brilliant organisation of the symposium recently held in Nyasaland. In making this gesture, Dr. Banda has recognised that Nyasaland will continue during the next phase to be subject to special strains and stresses.

We shall be retaining such constitutional powers as Her Majesty's Government regard as necessary for the discharge of their responsibility to Parliament which arises out of the assistance which the British Government give to the territory. Briefly, they consist of the retention by the Governor of reserved Executive and Legislative power in relation to the maintenance of financial and economic stability and the conditions attached to financial grants by Her Majesty's Government. Quite apart from these controls, it is essential that the fullest co-operation should continue to exist between the two Governments over financial matters, and I am sure that the proposal to retain the present Financial Secretary will contribute greatly to this end.

All parties at the conference also recognised the need to devise transitional arrangements which would safeguard the administrative stability of the territory during this period. This had to be done in ways which accorded with the essential change in the position of the public service which will result from the introduction of self-government. I made it clear during the course of the conference, and Dr. Banda attached special importance to this, that elected Ministers must be able to rely on the full loyalty and energies of the service and that the service must look to the Ministers as their chiefs.

At the same time, the confidence of the Civil Service must be retained, and individual civil servants must feel that they can within the framework of policy determined by Ministers perform their duties honestly and conscientiously and without fear or favour. This, I am glad to say, was agreed, and the special problem of the overseas or expatriate civil servants was also recognised. These special arrangements have been proposed—they are fully set out in the White Paper—to allow time for practical consideration of the problem of replacing overseas officers with local officers, with the object of retaining the services of the former for as long as they are needed.

Of course, there is a stage when Her Majesty's Government are obliged to secure far those overseas officers for whom we have special responsibility the right to retire voluntarily from the service and to receive compensation. As the White Paper also makes clear, it is the intention of Her Majesty's Government to begin negotiation of an agreement for this purpose with the Nyasaland Government in the near future.

I set out on purpose this position of the Service because, as the hon. Gentleman said in his speech, it is vital to have trained men to take the place of the trained men who are there at present, and I believe that in Nyasaland there is up and coming a very considerable number of people who can take these places when the time comes.

I should also like to refer to the question of the minority communities which was, naturally, very much in my mind and that of Her Majesty's Government during the course of the conference. I believe that the minorities themselves, in the form of the delegates who came, did a lot to safeguard their own rights by the part they played in helping to frame the Bill of Rights. Hon. Members will see from the section of the White Paper which deals with the minority communities and the Bill of Rights, which I undertake to the House not to go into in detail because that consists of the complicated amendment of the Uganda Bill of Rights, that the conference gave the closest and most careful consideration to this problem. I believe that the arrangements which we have proposed are in the best interests of the territory and will serve the purpose for which they are designed. I think that they will reassure individuals, and particularly members of the European minority, that their persons and property will be fully respected and safeguarded under the new Constitution.

Now just a moment on the Legislature and the franchise. Dr. Banda and, indeed, the Malawi Congress Party delegation desired that the next election should be held on the basis of universal adult suffrage, that the Legislature should be considerably enlarged and that the election of its members should be on a non-racial basis. It would, of course, be consistent with a self-governing constitution to move forward towards arrangements of that kind, but, at the same time, the important question of minority representation must be considered, and was considered.

The proposals which I have mentioned would mean the abolition of the dual roll with the consequent exclusion from the Legislature of members representative of the European community. The problem of alternative means by which this representation might be secured therefore arose. It was agreed that a forward move was not, however, essential at the present stage, since the essentials of self-government could be introduced without making changes in the Legislature or the franchise at this stage. Furthermore, there was no desire on any side for an early election in the territory. It was, therefore, possible to agree that further consultations should take place at a later convenient date to consider these two matters, the nature of the franchise and the nature of the representation of the minority, when it became possible to consider further practical advance.

Of course, everyone was very anxious, particularly the Malawi Ministers, that the new arrangements should be introduced at the earliest possible date. As hon. Members will realise, however, with the best will in the world, with drafting and everything else, some time will be necessary. To bring the full Constitution into effect will require several months of work. I am anxious that there should be no delay in making the first moves. We are, therefore, agreed that as a first step changes in the composition of the Executive Council, which include the appointment of a Prime Minister and certain consequential changes, should be brought into force at the beginning of February next year. At this stage the Governor's present powers will, of course, remain unchanged, but it will be Her Majesty's Government's purpose to bring into effect the full Constitution as soon as it is administratively possible thereafter.

That sums up the Nyasaland Constitution and saves hon. Members reading the White Paper. I think that it indicates that we can make steady progress in Nyasaland, and bears out what I said in my opening remarks, that hon. Members opposite, in their Motion, have done scant justice to the development of a Constitution at any rate in this territory. The Constitution takes special circumstances fully into account, but I should like the House to understand that many of the basic principles of British constitutional theory which govern the relations between the individual and the State will be found in practical form in this Constitution.

I turn to Northern Rhodesia.

Mr. Healey

Before the right hon. Gentleman leaves the question of Nyasaland, will he say whether Sir Roy Welensky is right in saying that he will shortly make a statement about Nyasaland's right to secede from the Federation?

Mr. Butler

I shall be dealing with matters of association before I conclude. I am dealing at the moment with the internal development of the territories.

In Northern Rhodesia, a General Election took place on 30th October. I am glad to say that, contrary to the forebodings expressed in some quarters, this election took place in a perfectly orderly and peaceful manner. I should like to pay tribute to the leaders of the political parties for the manner in which their followers behaved. I think that a good deal of tact and discrimination was exercised and a most commendable discipline was shown. We were all anxious before it and we have no reason to be anxious now as to the manner in which the election was carried out.

The result of the election is that no party has an absolute majority in the Legislature. In those circumstances, the Governor has appointed a caretaker Administration comprising officials and one nominated African Minister who held office in the outgoing Government.

The hon. Member mentioned Mr. Kaunda and Mr. Nkumbula. I had a preliminary talk with them this morning, and I hope to continue this tomorrow before they leave. Our talks are, therefore, not yet finished, and I cannot say any more on that subject today. I have informed them—and the House will equally understand—that I am glad to listen to their views and shall continue to do so tomorrow but that I could not by any answers prejudge the situation which may arise when the election is completed. I look forward, therefore, to a continuation of the talks. All that I can say is that I should like to have plenty of time—I do not mean months; I mean a reasonable time—to gauge the result of the election.

The hon. Member read out our Amendment, which he seemed to think particularly funny in regard to the election, but I fail to see how it is possible to start any negotiations or to consider any results until we know what the two Governments are in the territories to which I am referring.

Mr. Healey

Does the right hon. Gentleman expect that the by-elections will fill any of the national seats which were frustrated at the last election? If they do not do so, what action does he propose to take?

Mr. Butler

There are two questions. The first is whether I suppose that the by-elections will fill those seats. I do not know. There are these by-elections for 10 national seats and one in the upper roll seat for the Livingstone area. I cannot give the hon. Member the results any more than I can give him the results of the next General Election here, although I am quite sure that we shall win the next General Election.

In the latter part of his speech, I am glad to say that the hon. Gentleman was rather more reasonable. He said that he did not expect me to act for a little time until I had the chance of assessing the situation, and that is precisely the situation today. That is why final answers on a great many of these matters cannot be given in this debate, although I shall be glad to hear the point of view which anyone expresses.

Until the by-elections on 10th December it will be necessary for the caretaker Government to remain in office. There are to be 11 by-elections on 10th December and, as I have said, they are for one upper roll seat and 10 national seats. The hon. Member has already suggested that we should make considerable changes. It is only fair to say that this sort of suggestion comes from the same source as those which were inclined to make similar suggestions before the new Constitution came into force.

Mrs. Barbara Castle (Blackburn)

How right we were.

Mr. Butler

No one can deny that the new Constitution is complex and difficult to understand, particularly in its electoral arrangements, but in that it reflects the complexity of the situation in the territory with which we have to deal. The hon. Member has criticised the new Constitution. I ask him what were the objectives in framing it and bringing it into force. The first was substantially to increase African representation and the second was, through the deliberate provision of the national constituencies, to provide a middle block of seats in which both rolls and both races would be voting together, and which would afford a real opportunity for any party or pasties to secure a majority in the Legislature if they could obtain a reasonable measure of support from both races. This was the purpose of the Constitution.

We recognised the possibility of frustration and the possibility that candidates might find it difficult to surmount the initial hurdles in the national seats. Because of this a second run for these seats was provided for in the Constitution, and it is this second run which is taking place on 10th December. We do not know what the result of this will be, but with so many by-elections in the balance I appeal to the House not to indulge in comment or speculation which might influence opinion or raise tensions in the territory. We must await the results of the further voting, and in advance of that the House will not expect me to accept that we must introduce a new Constitution before the present Constitution has even started working.

I am glad to report that in general terms the territory remains tranquil and peaceful. I am confident that all responsible political leaders will work with the Governor to maintain this situation, and from what I have heard I am glad to think that that is genuinely the case. The territory continues forward progress. There is a new development plan which calls for the expenditure of £30 million over the next four years. The Commonwealth Development Corporation has recently made a loan to the territory of £1 million for African housing. The copper industry is maintaining a high level of production and remains the main element in the territory's economy. There is a great potential in this territory of Northern Rhodesia which can be realised and brought to fruition if all concerned with Northern Rhodesia's future adopt a steady, stable and sensible approach to the country's political problems. I am sure that all the territory's political leaders are very conscious of the responsibility which rests upon them at this moment.

I should like to refer to Southern Rhodesia. In Southern Rhodesia the new Constitution came into force on 1st November on the dissolution of the Southern Rhodesia Legislative Assembly. Because Her Majesty's Government's reserved powers under the old Constitution, now very largely given up, were never exercised, I believe that this introduction of a new Constitution will mean little difference to the constitutional relationship between Southern Rhodesia and the United Kingdom. In formal terms, however, Southern Rhodesia now enjoys an even greater degree of internal self-government than before.

Although they have been explained many times, I think that the House may find it helpful if I once more outline just what powers remain to Her Majesty's Government under the new Constitution. Indeed, I think that this is necessary in order to remind ourselves of the severely restricted nature of this Government's responsibilities in relation to Southern Rhodesia and also the limited extent to which this Government can be called upon to answer for the internal affairs of that country. The more that is realised the healthier the position will be.

Her Majesty's Government's remaining powers are confined to those features of the Constitution affecting the position of the Sovereign and the Governor. The Southern Rhodesia Legislature has power to amend or alter all other sections of the Constitution. This includes the franchise and the size and the composition of the Legislature. Amendment to the Constitution requires a two-thirds majority, except in the case of certain specially entrenched Clauses, and those relate to the declaration of rights, appeals to the Privy Council, the Constitutional Council, the judiciary and the provisions for the amendment of the Constitution itself. In this case, in addition to the two-thirds majority, there must be a referendum in which all four racial groups in the Colony vote separately and must also give their approval separately.

Incidentally, there is also special provision in the Southern Rhodesian Constitution for the entrenched Clause pro- cedure to be applied to the franchise, but only if the Legislature proposes to change it in a way detrimental to the African voters. That is to say, the African voters have a power of veto in this respect. The widening of the franchise, on the other hand, simply requires a two-thirds majority of the Legislature.

The only other power reserved to Her Majesty's Government under the Constitution is a power of disallowance in respect of any Southern Rhodesia law which appears to be inconsistent, first, with any of our international treaty obligations and, secondly, with undertakings given by the Southern Rhodesia Government in respect of loans under the Colonial Stock Acts. That is the extent of our responsibility for Southern Rhodesian internal affairs. In view of the many misconstructions which are put on our powers in relation to Southern Rhodesia, and which have led to so much misunderstanding, I felt it desirable to restate the position.

Her Majesty's Government, naturally, hope that under this Constitution Southern Rhodesia will—in the spirit to which the hon. Gentleman referred—make orderly political progress. I do not, and I am sure that the Southern Rhodesia Government do not, underestimate the inevitable problems presented by the existence of a large white minority in an otherwise African country. We shall be ready to give them any help we can in trying to solve these problems, within the limitations of our Constitutional relationship.

The solution to the problem of the relationship between the two races in Southern Rhodesia lies with the people themselves. This Constitution provides the basis for progress, but the Europeans and the African people of Southern Rhodesia alone can guarantee it. In answer to the hon. Gentleman, I honestly believe that he was putting up ninepins, as one of my hon. Friends said, and then trying to knock them down. I cannot take part in the Southern Rhodesian elections or quote speeches this way or that.

I cannot express a preference either way, because it is not my election and I have no right to interfere in it, but I know that there is a vast majority of European opinion, as expressed by Sir Edgar Whitehead in his speech at the United Nations, which does believe ardently in a non-racial idea, which does believe in an end to discrimination, which does believe in bringing in nondiscrimination, which does believe in an improvement of the situation in the African reserves, which does believe in spending even more money than they are now spending on education and which does believe in a liberation of the Constitution in the future. I am convinced that that is the case, and I do not think that the picture drawn by the hon. Member is correct. We shall see when we know the result.

At the United Nations, Her Majesty's Government remains ultimately responsible for Southern Rhodesian external affairs. Thus, when Southern Rhodesia is discussed at the United Nations it is necessary for Britain and the British delegation to speak for her, even though we have no say in her internal policies. We do not accept that the United Nations has any right to interfere in the internal affairs of Southern Rhodesia. We have, nevertheless, found it desirable to do something to correct the wild distortion of fact which has marked the United Nations debates. The House will, therefore, be aware of the arrangement which was made for Sir Edgar Whitehead to go to New York and to address the Fourth Committee. His appearance had a reassuring effect on the many delegations there, who realise, as we do, that African majority government in Southern Rhodesia, inevitable and assured though it may be, cannot come about as quickly as in other African territories where the same racial problems do not exist. What the Southern Rhodesian Government are doing to advance their ideas for a non-racial State was most convincingly presented to the United Nations by Sir Edgar Whitehead.

I should like to read one extract, because it gave us grounds for hope, and I think that on whichever side of the House we sit we desire to see progress made in Southern Rhodesia. On African political advancement, Sir Edgar said that nothing could check it. He went on to say: I know the suspicions that have existed, that in point of fact the European minority intend to cling to power for all time. I want to give the most solemn assurances—because I have given them before—that that idea is completely impossible, and we know it to be impossible. What we want is limited time to build a non-racial state, which I admit, should have been started earlier; and we had every intention of doing it. Those are words which at least can give us some encouragement for the future. When Sir Edgar Whitehead passed through London on his way to and from New York I had the opportunity to have discussions with him which I think were helpful to us both. It is my earnest wish that our ties with Southern Rhodesia, of so many years' standing, far from being weakened by this new Constitution may be strengthened by mutual trust and regard and that as a result we can continue to play our part in the future of that country as we have for the past seventy years.

I have touched on the three territories and I wish to conclude with a few words on the central problem, to which reference is made in the Opposition Motion. That is the problem of the future association of the three territories. The Motion proposes quite simply that Her Majesty's Government should dissolve the present Federation. This is to take a purely destructive attitude. What we must do is to build up and construct, to take account rightly of all aspirations for the future as well as of the benefits that have derived from the past. Whatever changes may be required—and they may well be radical changes—one of our aims must surely be to see that those benefits which have accrued from past association may be preserved.

When I spoke in our debate on 8th May, I made clear that the objective of Her Majesty's Government was to find an acceptable solution which would maintain the very real advantages of association between the territories. Since we have reviewed the situation in the light of the inquiries undertaken by the group of advisers whose appointment I announced on 28th June, we see no reason to alter our view of the advantages of association to which I have just referred. This is despite the fact that the present Federation is the object of considerable criticism.

I think that it would be true to say that there is in all the territories, in varying degrees, an expectation that there will be changes. People believe that there will be changes in the present arrangements. There is also a desire to see decisions taken which would remove political uncertainties and retain the practical advantages of co-operation on a basis acceptable to the territories. The hon. Member referred to Nyasaland. It is quite clear that the consequence for Nyasaland of withdrawal from the Federation would be serious. The Nyasaland Government are fully conscious of these problems, but I should be misleading the House were I to suggest that this has in any way changed or shaken the views of the elected Ministers on this subject. I am not in a position to go any further on it today, but Her Majesty's Government have had it under constant consideration.

In facing this particular pressing problem we must still seek to pursue an all-round approach to the problem of association. I am thinking more particularly of the association between Northern and Southern Rhodesia. Much here depends on the result of the elections and on the nature of the Governments which are established in the two territories, both Northern and Southern Rhodesia. Northern and Southern Rhodesia have together built up an economy which is interlocking in respect of the sources of wealth, of power and of communications. The hon. Member himself referred to the value of these links and to the statements of leaders, both African and European, on this subject. The Rhodesias also have a history the significance of which we could not disregard.

I am quite clear myself—and this is in response to the hon. Member—that we should look to the new year, after the elections, as a time for consultations with the Federal and Territorial Governments so that we may then enter on the next constructive phase of our work. I shall endeavour to keep the House informed of these matters as they develop. If necessary, I shall do so before we rise for the Christmas Recess. Meanwhile, in planning an acceptable future for Central Africa, we have every right to look for the sympathy and support of the House and of the country.

5.20 p.m.

Mr. Dingle Foot (Ipswich)

There is just one point on which I find myself in entire agreement with the right hon. Gentleman. I think that all of us on this side of the House who know Central Africa would wish to associate ourselves with the right hon. Gentleman's expression of regret and sympathy at the deaths of Mr. Mushonga and, a little earlier, of Mr. D. K. Chisija. I remember Mr. Chisija very clearly. I met him on a number of occasions when he was a prisoner in Gwelo Prison. I was tremendously impressed by him. We all realise that at this early stage in its development Nyasaland has suffered a very serious loss indeed and our sympathies go out from both sides of the House.

We should all like to welcome the successful outcome of the Nyasaland Constitutional Conference. The only reflection which passed through my mind was that no one ignorant of recent African history listening to the speech of the right hon. Gentleman would suppose that less than three years ago Dr. Banda was occupying almost precisely the same position as that in which Joshua Nkomo finds himself now.

My hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) put a number of questions to the Government, but to none of them have we had an answer. Those questions will have to be answered soon, if not in this debate, then within the next few weeks. Even if we cannot compel an answer, an answer certainly will be compelled by the march of events in Central Africa. I wish to formulate three questions in the clearest terms I can. The first is, do the Government now recognise the right, in Nyasaland or either of the Rhodesias, to secede from the Federation? Secondly, will the Government agree to further constitutional changes in Northern Rhodesia? Thirdly, will the Government withold the transfer of full sovereignty to Southern Rhodesia until there is in that country genuine representative government? Those in essence were, I think, the three questions put by my hon. Friend and all of them have been evaded by the right hon. Gentleman deliberately.

The first principle on which I believe we in this House have to make up our minds is very simple. It is that, whether we regret it or not, the Federation cannot continue. In 1953, the party opposite took a very big chance. Hon. Members opposite knew perfectly well the depth and fierceness of the opposition there was among all vocal African opinion to federation. In spite of that, they decided to impose it. They knew they were doing it in defiance of African representatives, at any rate in the two Northern Territories. I think they actually believed at that time that the economic benefits of federation would become so apparent that the Africans would become reconciled to it. I do not think that it would be disputed in any part of the House that the reverse has been the case. The whole history throughout these years since 1953 has been one of growing hostility on the part of the African populations.

If any hon. Members have doubts on that in relation to Nyasaland, they need only refer back to the Devlin Report, and the votes cast in the last few days have given almost precisely the same answer in relation to Northern Rhodesia. It was two years ago that the Monckton Commission recommended that the Government should at least accept the principle of secession. We are still waiting for a decision on the Monckton recommendations. Of course, if we choose, we can disband the Federation. Here is another question to which we have never had an answer from the Government. If it is right to break up the West Indian Federation because Jamaica and Trinidad wish to leave, how can it be wrong to apply the same principle in Central Africa?

I want to say only a word or two about Northern Rhodesia because, although the right hon. Gentleman said that he was still continuing his conversations with Mr. Kaunda, we all know quite clearly that Mr. Kaunda will ask for a new constitution. For years we have been having debates in this House on the Constitution of Northern Rhodesia. As my hon. Friend said, we have had the system of fancy franchises based on property qualifications and literacy. Very naturally, the Africans of Northern Rhodesia demand to know why they should receive different treatment from Africans in Nyasaland or, for that matter, Africans in the East African territories.

I come to the question of Southern Rhodesia. No one listening to the right hon. Gentleman a few minutes ago would have supposed that anything whatever had happened in Southern Rhodesia since the new Constitution came into force in 1961. We all know, of course, that the only effective African party has been proscribed. I put a Question to the right hon. Gentleman on 22nd November. I asked him: whether he will introduce legislation to amend the Constitution of Southern Rhodesia in order to give greater freedom to political parties and to individuals. The right hon. Gentleman replied: Except for matters affecting the position of the Queen and the Governor, the amendment of the present Constitution is a matter for the Southern Rhodesia Legislature. I then asked: does the right hon. Gentleman appreciate that the African National Congress was banned in 1959, that its successor, the National Democratic Party was banned last year, and that Z.A.P.U. was banned this year? How does he expect that any democratic constitution can function if organisations representing the majority of the people are forbidden to operate?"—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 22nd November, 1962; Vol. 667, c. 1374–5.] It is perfectly true that, one after the other, each representative African organisation has been forbidden to operate and its leaders have been locked up without a charge being preferred and without trial. Even today we have under restriction in a remote part of the country Mr. Nyandoro and five other members of the African National Congress, which was banned nearly three years ago. I remember going to Salisbury at the beginning of 1960 and meeting the leaders of the National Democratic Party. They were just begining to build up their organisation, but all the time they, too, were living under the fear of proscription. They told me that they were certain that, as soon as they became prominent and active, the same measure would be taken against them as had been taken against the African National Congress. As we know, their fears were fully justified.

Finally, there is the banning of Z.A.P.U. and there are the reasons which have been given for it. The right hon. Gentleman said that it was banned because it decided to adopt unlawful means for prosecuting its ends. I wonder how the right hon. Gentleman knows that, because all we have had is a White Paper issued by the Southern Rhodesian Government. I want to quote one passage from the White Paper. This is the justification which was put forward by the Government for the banning of Z.A.P.U.: Z.A.P.U.'s published aims were 'to fight for the immediate and total liquidation of imperialism and colonialism, direct or indirect, and to co-operate with any international forces as are engaged in this struggle. To establish a democratic state with a Government based on one man, one vote, and in which democratic liberties thrive. 'To foster the spirit of Pan Africanism in Zimbabwe {Southern Rhodesia) and the maintenance of firm links with Pan African movements all over Africa. 'To maintain peaceful and friendly relations with such nations as are friendly towards them. 'To eliminate economic exploitation of people and to struggle for economic prosperity in order to achieve the greatest happiness of the greatest number. 'To foster the best in African culture and thereby develop the basis of a desirable social order'. Those are all quotations from the expressed aims of Z.A.P.U. This is the comment of the authors of the White Paper: In brief, its manifesto was neo-Communist and Pan African in character and it fostered extreme racialism. The authors go on to describe various acts of arson, burning and terrorism which they say took place. The inference at any rate is that these all happened with the consent of the leaders of Z.A.P.U.

In the history of Africa in recent years there have been quite a number of such White Papers. I remember a similar White Paper in what is now Ghana in 1948. I remember a very similar document in Nyasaland, in 1959. On this occasion we have at any rate been spared the massacre plot. That has been done twice without much success and perhaps it will not be resorted to again.

The difference is this. When we were responsible in Nyasaland, in 1959, and when charges of a very similar character were brought against Dr. Banda and his associates, they were at any rate given the opportunity to answer. We sent out the Devlin Commission, a commission which, I understand, hon. Members opposite are rather reluctant to remember, though I think that they must remember with a sense of shame the debate which took place in this House on the Report of the Commission. Dr. Banda and his colleagues were given the opportunity to appear before the commission and were able to defend themselves before the commission. No such opportunity has been given to Mr. Joshua Nkomo and his associates. They simply have to carry on in restriction in a remote part of the country, cut off from any normal political activity.

Of course there are cases of intimidation. Intimidation is endemic in Africa though it does not always take place simply on one side. The point I want to make is that Southern Rhodesia is still a colonial territory, in the sense that it is still ruled by an alien majority. From the point of view of the African, it does not make very much difference whether those who govern him are resident Europeans or expatriate Europeans. They are still aliens. They are still of different race.

Mr. John Biggs-Davison (Chigwell)

For how many generations would it be necessary for a European to live in Southern Rhodesia before he ceased to be an alien?

Mr. Foot

I am not dealing with the question how long someone has to live there technically before he ceases to be an alien. I am dealing with the point of view of the African population. I say that this is an alien population which has been there for the last fifty years, a population which is completely separate, with different privileges, different customs and a different way of life. It is this small population of about a quarter of a million people who exercise all effective political power. We have surely learned that there are only two ways in which a subject people can be governed. It can be done by force, or it can be done by consent. It is true that for a very long time in British territories the white man was there with the tacit consent of the African. That was probably true in the early days in the Rhodesias. I am certain it was true in West Africa. It was probably true in East Africa.

There comes a time when the consent is withdrawn, and that has been happening throughout Africa during the last fifteen years. When that stage is reached there are only two alternatives. Either one concedes genuine self-government or one is forced more and more into the methods of a police State. This was the position which arose in Nyasaland three years ago. Indeed, the Devlin Commission used the phrase "a police State" to describe Nyasaland in 1959. In that country Her Majesty's Government have reversed their policy. I am delighted that they have. They have adopted the other alternative, that of conceding genuine self-Government.

The question now is what can be done in Southern Rhodesia. Last year Her Majesty's Government abdicated their responsibilities. They gave away in very large measure the substance of power. Looking back at the three debates we had in 1961—they are well worth rereading—it is remarkable to see how nearly all the apprehensions expressed by my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Newport (Sir F. Soskice), my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East and others of my hon. Friends, have been realised and how the safeguards in regard to human rights, and so on, have all been made practically nugatory by the application of the earlier restrictive legislation which caused Sir Robert Tredgold to resign his office as Chief Justice and which was specifically exempted from the working of the new Constitution.

Her Majesty's Government have gone a very long way, but we do ask them, and we shall continue to ask them, for this assurance. Juridically, the right to govern Southern Rhodesia still rests here in the Imperial Parliament. As the First Secretary of State said, we still have to speak for Southern Rhodesia in the United Nations. We are still responsible for the external relations of Southern Rhodesia—that is to say, we have not yet handed over full sovereignty. We on this side of the House ask, and will continue to ask, that full sovereignty will never be handed over so long as there is the state of affairs which now prevails in Southern Rhodesia under which the effective political power is confined to a small minority.

Hon. Members on both sides of the House are conscious of the fact that a most dangerous situation is developing throughout the southern part of the African Continent. There is the build-up of arms in the Republic of South Africa, arms which come not only from this country but from many other parts of the world. On top of that, there is the deadlock in Central Africa. For the situation in Central Africa Her Majesty's Government bear a very heavy responsibility. I am sure that they have always wanted to do their best. They have always wanted to reconcile the irreconcilable. They have always been looking for some stratagem or some form of political expertise which would get them out of their difficulties. All the time the trouble has been that their policy has never been based on any consistent principle. It has been in Burke's phrase, "The accumulated patchwork of occasional accommodation". That may very well apply to the speech that we have heard from the right hon. Gentleman today.

The hour is getting late. We may not have very much more time to solve these problems in Central Africa. We can solve them only if Her Majesty's Government will make up their minds and if they are prepared, if not today, in the near future, to give clear answers to the questions that we have put to them.

5.40 p.m.

Mr. R. H. Turton (Thirsk and Malton)

This seems to me to be a most untimely moment to have chosen for a debate on Central Africa. We have had, in my view, two most irresponsible and dangerous speeches from the hon. Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) and the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Mr. D. Foot). I do not know what effect they were trying to achieve in their speeches. What will be the effect in Southern Rhodesia at the present time of the speech of the hon. Member for Leeds, East, who is supposed to be the Shadow First Secretary for Africa or the Shadow Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations?

Mr. Charles Pannell (Leeds, West)

At any rate he is not so shadowy as the right hon. Gentleman.

Mr. Turton

Which party in the coming election will be encouraged? The hon. Gentleman knows perfectly well that every word uttered by the two hon. Gentlemen will give encouragement to the Rhodesia Front and stop the effort at racial partnership in Central Africa.

The hon. Gentleman talked about a moral crime to create a new South Africa in Central Africa. His words, if nothing else, will do that very thing. A responsible Opposition would hardly put down a Motion like this when there is not only a General Election in Southern Rhodesia but when there are by-elections in Northern Rhodesia. It will not help.

What is the policy of the Opposition in Central Africa? I fail to gather it from those two speeches. The hon. and learned Member for Ipswich said that we must not give sovereignty to Southern Rhodesia. He admits—he is a lawyer—that we have no power to interfere in matters of internal self-government in Southern Rhodesia. He says that he would not give them sovereignty. Is Southern Rhodesia to realise that if by some unhappy misfortune a Socialist Government is returned at the next election, they will remain on such terms as have been described by the two hon. Gentlemen without any hope of ever getting any independent status? Is that really what the Labour Opposition put forward as their policy?

Mr. D. Foot

My hon. Friend and I—if I may speak for him as well—made it perfectly clear that we were both in favour of giving complete sovereignty and independence to Southern Rhodesia as soon as there is a genuinely representative Government.

Mr. Turton

They know that if a Labour Government get into power they will have no right to interfere; in other words, it means that Southern Rhodesia will remain dependent but on bad terms with Her Majesty's Government, and that, in my view, will be an insufferable position. I would ask the Opposition to try to get a responsible attitude towards these countries in Central Africa.

The Southern Rhodesian Constitution was agreed to originally by Mr. Nkomo and then, because he was intimidated, he withdrew from it. We have had in Northern Rhodesia the February Constitution, the June Constitution and the March, 1962, Constitution. The weakness in Central Africa is that there has not been a sound, stable policy, certainly on the Opposition side, and I would say that until my right hon. Friend assumed his office, not on the Government side. I give my right hon. Friend full credit for the way that he has been standing firmly on the policy that that has been put forward. These are the Constitutions which we are supporting in the hope of getting some form of settled Government and racial partnership in Central Africa.

The hon. Member for Leeds, East, said that there was no hope of a non- racial form of government in Central Africa. There are many thousands of people, black as well as white, who are looking to find some way of getting a non-racial partnership. It is true that that does not apply to the leading politicians. How can we when hon. Members like the hon. Member for Leeds, East and the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich ferment them into trying to break up the Federation all the time. I would plead with both sides of the House to try to be responsible in this matter and not to create more difficulties in what is undoubtedly—I admit it at once—a very difficult situation in Central Africa. We have heard from the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich. May I quote his brother's words. In a broadcast Sir Hugh Foot said: I believe that the future outlook in Africa is terrifying. There is a prospect of perhaps ten years of terrible bloodshed. On returning to this country I find no realisation that we are on the edge of commotion, bloodshed and violence, not only in South Africa and the Congo, but in East and West Africa. Once violence starts and spreads you will find that you have no moderate leaders in Africa. Those are very wise words. Sir Hugh was talking about the whole Continent of Africa, because the whole Continent of Africa is in ferment, and, as hon. Members on both sides know, there is a great deal of Communist infiltration in Africa and incitement to violence.

The hon. and learned Member for Ipswich was asking why Z.A.P.U. was banned. If he had been in Southern Rhodesia at that time, he would know perfectly well that not all the leaders but some of the leaders of Z.A.P.U. were aiding the burning of Africans with petrol bombs and were aiding the sending of arms from Communist sources into the townships. For that reason, the Government, being responsible for law and order, banned Z.A.P.U. I believe that we have to maintain law and order in Africa if we are to have any hope of an ordered Government and of economic prosperity. Look at what has happened all over Africa, not merely Central Africa. Look at the steps which have had to be taken in Ghana, in Nigeria and even in Egypt.

There is at the moment a ferment and therefore it is our duty as responsible politicians to support a Government who are taking steps to maintain law and order, and not to act and speak mischievously in the way that the hon. Member for Leeds, East has spoken when he addressed the House earlier this afternoon. It is really a confession for the hon. Gentleman to say, "I know what is being said in the bars. I have never been to Central Africa. But I know it perfectly well." When he realises the damage his words are doing in Central Africa and then confesses that he has never been to that place, I think that it is extremely irresponsible.

On the question of the federal review, I am not quite clear from what my right hon. Friend said whether he anticipates that early in the New Year there will be a continuation of the consultation that ended on 17th December, 1960. I remember that on 20th December, 1960, my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister, talking about the adjournment of that conference, gave us to understand that when the new constitutions were finished there would be consultation with the five Governments as to what form the review would take. I am certain that it is much better to do this by consultation than by any organised conference.

We all recognise the difficulties of the continuation of the Federation in its present form—I quite agree there especially with regard to Nyasaland—but we seem to overlook the damage that will be done to Africa if the association of the three territories is ended, and nothing else takes its place. I would remind the House of the following words in paragraph 71 of the Monckton Report: … the immediate reaction to the dissolution of the Federation, both inside and outside the area, would be that a great experiment in race relations had failed. This experiment is being watched with close interest throughout the world. If it could be made to succeed it could have a profound effect upon developments … I profoundly believe that.

I believe that if we get away from politics, and talk in the towns in Africa—and, even more, in the villages and the rural communities—we will find a great anxiety to make this great experiment in non-racial approach work. It is a great pity that in this House party politics are being played in order to try to weaken the determination of Britain to make this experiment succeed. It is even more unfortunate that a similar attempt is being made at the United Nations.

On whatever side we sit in this House, we are very reluctant to approve of the way in which the United Nations has behaved in this matter. I would, however, make this plea to my right hon. Friend. It seems to me that if the United Nations intends to interfere in Central Africa, it is very important that whoever represents us there should have an intimate knowledge of Central Africa. That is why I think that it was such a very wise move on my right hon. Friend's part to invite Sir Edgar Whitehead to speak at the United Nations—and it was a very great success.

It was unfortunate that Sir Hugh Foot, with all his great qualifications, was chosen to represent us on the Trusteeship Council, when he had never been to Central Africa, but I should have thought that, once chosen, he would have gone to Central Africa to learn the background. I hope that my right hon. Friend can assure us that that will not be allowed to happen again.

I should also be grateful if the First Secretary would tell us whether it is true, as reported, that in the summer of this year Sir Hugh Foot said that he disagreed with the Government's policy. If that is correct, why was he allowed to go back to his work of representation? Quite clearly, no man can put forward views in which he does not believe. I should have thought that Sir Hugh would have resigned at that moment but, even if he did not, it was most improper for the Government to allow him to continue to represent us at the United Nations.

Many people in this country are very unhappy over this chapter or events, and I hope that in his reply my right hon. Friend will be able to clear up this point. Meanwhile, I know that he realises that although at times we all have differing views on the future in Central Africa, and may have differed in the past, all hon. Members, I think, have been very impressed with the way in which he has tackled what is the biggest job of the century. We wish him every success.

5.53 p.m.

Mr. George Thomas (Cardiff, West)

The right hon. Member for Thirsk and Malton (Mr. Turton) contributes to our debates on affairs in Africa with regularity, and he is listened to as one representing a very definite school of thought. I should have thought that his anxiety about the United Nations now taking interest in the affairs of Central Africa would have been allayed by the knowledge that 60 million Africans who have found freedom and have been granted independence are bound to use their influence in the United Nations for the 8 million of their brothers who still are struggling towards independence. The fact that we have a new form of United Nations, with so many of the newly-emergent Powers taking their part there, puts the writing on the wall for Her Majesty's Government. The Government will find these issues raised until independence is reached by all the peoples concerned.

The right hon. Gentleman scolded my hon. Friends for being irresponsible. I know that they are well able to look after themselves, but I want to say this. I am a newcomer to these debates on Central Africa, and I confess at once that I have never been to that country. That does not in the slightest inhibit me saying what I think of the position. I do not for one moment accept the doctrine that one must go to a country before one can speak about it. In fact, some of the Members who go for a fortnight's visit to countries like Central Africa—with expenses paid for by interested parties—give their views to the House on their return with, I believe, less authority than those who examine the problem from afar. If we have not a long time to study the problem in the country itself, it is better to do as we do, and try to bring to bear on the question as impartial a mind as possible.

The right hon. Gentleman the First Secretary was very naïve when he suggested that he did not want any discord in this debate, because the speech of my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) was a massive indictment of the Government's record in Central Africa. Of course there are politics in this. Hon. Members opposite cannot escape their responsibility for the present muddle—it has not arisen in five minutes. I believe that the Government have missed great opportunities by making wrong estimates of people in Central Africa, and their reactions. They are reaping a harvest of thistles, because that is what they have planted.

To force the Federation on the African people was error enough, but the Government's other activities have underlined the mistake they then made. When the Government abolished the African Affairs Board they took away the confidence of African people, who believed—and, as events have proved, justifiably believed—that they would be open to intimidation. As my hon. Friends have said, when the Government surrendered their reserve powers they gave the all-clear to people in Southern Rhodesia to dig in their heels.

I have links with Southern Rhodesia. I have close members of my family who live there. I would not want to say a word to hurt the Europeans who have been born and have grown up there, as my cousins have done. They regard this as the old country and come home regularly, but they are Rhodesians and their roots are there. I believe that my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East gave a fair word of warning to our European cousins in Southern Rhodesia that the sands of time are running out for them to come to a greater understanding with the African peoples.

Even Sir Edgar Whitehead, whose more liberal speeches have encouraged a great many people in recent days, had this to say recently: What I would not be prepared to agree to is that those who have not had either the education or the experience of life necessary to make solutions on a national level should be able to be swayed by some orator into overthrowing all the work of the last seventy years. and he went on to accuse leaders of saying irresponsible things. If we are to wait until the African people have the same educational standards as their European cousins we shall have to wait a very long time. So little has been done for the Africans in Southern Rhodesia that they lag behind the other parts of Central Africa, as hon. Members on both sides of the House will realise.

I welcome the fact that there is an awakening amongst some people in Southern Rhodesia that the old order has to go and that a more liberal attitude has to be adopted. I believe that they have left it too late to resist the tide of African people demanding what surely as human beings they are entitled to demand—parity. One does not need an education to be able to cast a vote, or we should have to change our system in this country a great deal. One does not decide the basis of democracy by the status of people in the community, by their wealth, or by their school. There is no moral case at all for withholding from the Africans the prospect of majority rule in each of the Central African countries.

As for Northern Rhodesia, I believe that we are in danger of undermining the position of moderate men like Mr. Kaunda with his own people. Evidence has come to me from folk who live and work among the African people that Mr. Kaunda, who was on the telephone urging Europeans to stand firm and work with him at the recent elections, had a very small response indeed from people of calibre and notability, and that the Europeans there may well be undermining their own position by refusing to work with responsible Africans who want to co-operate with the Europeans. One would think that even a blind man could see in Central Africa today that Europeans must be prepared to accept African leadership, and that when we meet with men of strength and ability and integrity it is foolish to undermine their position by refusing to co-operate. This is the tragedy of what is appearing in Central Africa today.

I did not disagree with the right hon. Member for Thirsk and Malton when he quoted Sir Hugh Foot's words about the danger of violence breaking out. It would be a great tragedy for people who have already suffered enough and for the Europeans who have known anxiety enough as they have watched the difficulties in Kenya at present. I believe that the Government's dithering makes violence more likely.

The right hon. Gentleman the First Secretary ought to have told the House and the country today whether he has privately agreed with Dr. Banda on the question of secession. It is not a matter for private agreement. It is a matter about which all of us and Central Africa are entitled to know. The right hon. Gentleman also ought to have given greater encouragement to those Africans who are genuinely seeking to create a society there where European talents will be used and European security will be protected with an African majority, which is the logic of that part of the world.

6.6 p.m.

Mr. Humphrey Atkins (Merton and Morden)

I am glad to follow the hon. Member for Cardiff, West (Mr. G. Thomas) in the debate and to have heard his remarks about Europeans in Southern Rhodesia which were much more moderate than those made by his hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) and his hon. and learned Friend the Member for Ipswich (Mr. D. Foot). The hon. Member has not been in Southern Rhodesia. I have, and I think that the picture he painted of the Europeans he knows who live in Southern Rhodesia was very much nearer the truth than those painted by his hon. Friends.

It is no part of my business to defend the Southern Rhodesia Government and I do not propose to do so, but I find it very difficult to sit and listen quietly to a wholesale condemnation of Sir Edgar Whitehead's Government and to attempts to paint a picture of the Southern Rhodesia Government as opposed to all forms of progress and as anxious to cling to power as long as they possibly can and to use any methods so to do. This was not the impression I had when I was in Southern Rhodesia a year ago, and it is not, of course, the impression that Sir Edgar Whitehead conveyed when he spoke to the United Nations a few weeks ago.

In passing, I should like to follow up the suggestion made by my right hon. Friend the Member for Thirsk and Mallon (Mr. Turton) about the question of the voice of Southern Rhodesia in the United Nations. We, the British Government, seem to find ourselves in the position of defending the Southern Rhodesia Government from attacks. We are in no position to do so when we cannot influence their decisions and when we are not on the ground we do not necessarily know the reasons as well as they do. I should like to suggest for the consideration of my right hon. Friend and his colleagues in the Government whether some way should not be found of allowing Southern Rhodesia her own voice in the United Nations when her own affairs are under discus- sion. I am sure that it is proper that that she should have that voice.

I want to speak briefly about the future of the Federation. Like most of us, I admire the experiment that was made in federation in this part of Africa, but I am sure that it cannot continue in its present form. I regret this very much, because it was a wonderful experiment. From what little I know of the country I do not think it can possibly go on as it is now, but I would urge my right hon. Friend not to rush into dissolving it. I say this not because I think that if we wait a little while it can be made to go on, but for a quite different reason. The people who are to lead the countries concerned must have a full and proper opportunity to understand what it is all about.

I will give two examples to show what I mean and illustrate how people's opinions will change. When I visited Nyasaland last year, I had an interview with Dr. Banda, who had fairly recently been elected to a position of power. He spoke about federation and declared that he would have nothing to do with it, would have nothing to do with either of the other territories in the Federation, and that, rather than have anything to do with it, he and his people would willingly starve. A year later, his view seems to have changed somewhat. He realises that, while federation in its present form may not be what he wants, there are obvious advantages in some form of association.

In Northern Rhodesia, none of us yet know who will be the leader of the majority party and be in a position of power there. If Mr. Kaunda—I knew that this is hypothetical—finds himself as another African leader in a position of responsibility after the by-elections which are soon to be held, he will, I am sure, as he discovers more about the problems and machinery of Government, if not modify his views, at least be able to form a better-informed view than he can now.

I think that it would be wise from every point of view to delay as long as possible the final break-up of the Federation, if this has to come. As has been said, although the breaking up of the Federation is probably quite easy to bring about, if nothing follows it there will be disaster. There must be some form of association. No doubt, this will provide my right hon. Friend with yet another highly difficult task. I say to him at this stage only that I hope he will follow his own advice and, as he builds, start right from ground level. Whatever association is to follow in this part of Africa must, obviously, command the consent of all the people. I urge my right hon. Friend to start at the bottom, at the lowest form of association, and gradually build as high as he can a connection between all three countries, if possible, or, at least, between two.

I feel that the failure of the present Federation, if such it be, may be due to the fact that it was too ambitious and went too far too soon. I should like to see in any new arrangements a slightly less close connection between the countries than, perhaps, we should wish if this will enable us later gradually to encourage the countries to integrate more and more closely together. I do not want us to make the same mistake again of trying to arrange too tight a link which is only resisted by the people of the countries concerned. I am sure that it is to the advantage of all the peoples there that an association should exist, and I hope that my right hon. Friend will be able to bring it about in the difficult months ahead.

6.13 p.m.

Mr. Roy Mason (Barnsley)

I am sorry to have to say at the outset that only one speech during the debate so far has upset me personally and been out of keeping with the general tone and form of the debate. This was the opening speech by my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey). I must say that, as I Listened to the right hon. Gentleman the First Secretary of State, I felt that the tone and substance of his speech was much more in keeping with my thinking than was the speech of my hon. Friend. Indeed, if I had not previously decided not to vote on this issue, the right hon. Gentleman's speech would certainly have kept me out of the Lobby.

I voice opinions in the House about African affairs only in regard to those territories which I have visited. This is only the third occasion that I have spoken on colonial matters. The first time was after I returned from the Gold Coast, in 1956. Six of us went as members of a delegation. On our return, five of us addressed the House and voiced apprehensions about the future of the Gold Coast when it became Ghana because of what we had observed at first hand, not from 4,000 miles away. Few at that time had visited the Gold Coast and few really knew the facts and circumstances. We were of opinion, and said quite openly in the Chamber, that the Gold Coast was receiving independence prematurely, and we warned the House of the black dictatorship to follow. Much of what we said then has come to pass.

In Ghana, in spite of the fact that it is independent and free, there is a black dictatorial régime which is suppressing many of the freedoms which its coloured people enjoyed when they were under white rule. I think that all hon. Members, irrespective of whether they take an interest in African affairs or not, must not be blind to the fact that an educated, dictatorially-minded African leader will exploit the mass illiteracy of his people more than the white man has ever done. The first example which comes to mind is that of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. Next, I think of Jomo Kenyatta, the Kikuyu people and Mau Mau. The example of Dr. Banda makes one fear that a similar situation could arise elsewhere. I have similar fears, though not to the same extent, of Kenneth Kaunda. A man who is educated, who is dictatorially-minded and who has a mass illiterate people about him, tends to go that way.

I have been to the three territories in question, Nyasaland, Northern Rhodesia and Southern Rhodesia. I went at the invitation of Sir Roy Welensky, Prime Minister of the Federal Government. As is well known, he has agents in this country who arrange these things, Voice and Vision. This organisation has been blasphemed often enough, but I can only say that I was given the opportunity of learning a lot more about Central Africa from my visit than otherwise I could have done.

Obviously, Sir Roy Welensky, in inviting as many Members as he did, felt that he had a story to tell, a story that he was not ashamed of. He was not ashamed that people should go out and see for themselves. Many hon. Members who have been on these tours will say quite openly that they were able to see as much in all the three territories as was humanly possible in the 15 days that they were there. This is certainly true in my case. We were able to encounter all shades of opinion and meet anyone we requested to meet. I defy any of the 40 Members who have been there to say otherwise.

I make only one condition when I go on these sponsored tours, whether to East Germany, Poland, the Soviet Union, or Central Africa. I insist that, when I return, I must be able to speak and write as freely as I please. In this poverty-stricken, pauperised Parliament, visits of this kind offer the only possible way for us to make these important visits. I certainly could not go otherwise, and I take advantage of them.

Thirty-five of the 40 Members who have been to Central Africa have, on their return, spoken of their belief in a continued Federation, or, at least, in the continuation of a strong economic connection. If 100 Members had been, or if the whole House had been, I am sure that the majority would similarly have been in favour. I believe that, if many more Members had been able to go, or if Sir Roy Welensky had by some means been able to invite the whole House to see his territories, then all the parties concerned here might have done a lot more to ensure the success of the Federation.

In these three territories, as was true in Ghana and as is true in Kenya and Tanganyika, we hold the destiny of millions of Africans in our hands. But knowledge is possessed by too few. I believe that the federation idea was good and that we ought to have done more to uphold it. The education of hon. Members started too late and, as a consequence, there has been a great deal of criticism.

Africa is not one country. Ghana is as different from Kenya as is the Congo from Nigeria. These African countries differ from one another, they have different histories, different cultures and, what is more, different tribes. Many of us who have been out to see them know, as, indeed, can be understood from theory alone, that tribal conflicts in Africa engender more hatred among black Africans than there has ever been towards white people. Time and again, we witnessed tribal feelings proving far stronger than party political loyalties.

Dr. Kwame Nkrumah is suffering at the moment because of the feeling of the tribe around him. He is trying to banish its members and to put them into detention without charge and yet today we are talking about a "colony" in Southern Rhodesia as compared with what is virtually independent Ghana where these things are rife. The Congo has had its share of tribal conflict and Kenya had it with Mau Mau.

One saving grace in Central Africa is that tribal conflicts are not so strong and that there are more white people who are Africans, who in Southern Rhodesia are white Africans of the second and third generation. Because of those factors, there has not been the same tribal hate among the tribes in the three territories of the Federation, and because there are more people who consider themselves to be white Africans, purely Rhodesians in Southern Rhodesia, there is a chance to build-up the Federation. If we were all concerned as much as I am convinced, there would still be a chance.

The difficulty is that there are far too many inflammatory speeches by responsible people in this country about what is happening or might happen in Africa. Time and time again these speeches incite the Africans, speaking of "Africa for the Africans", fanning the flames of Africanisation most irresponsibly. It is almost like saying "Britain for the British". How Mosleyish can one get? This is almost a Fascist outlook. It is not only speeches. We have recently had the classic example of signatures to demands in an advertisement on behalf of the Defence and Aid Fund. What a deplorable story this is. Led by a man who ought to place truth above all else, the whole statement was a complete distortion of the truth.

Mr. G. Thomas

If my hon. Friend the Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason) intends to embark on a personal attack, he ought to appreciate that the canon in question is an honourable man and took the first opportunity to express his regret at having made this mistake.

Mr. Mason

I appreciate that, but my hon. Friend the Member for Cardiff, West (Mr. G. Thomas) must realise that speeches as well as demands ought to have their facts checked before they are made. For instance, signatures were appended and moneys were raised from people who recognised the signatures. The money might well have been obtained by misrepresentation. Many people might have sent money immediately they saw this statement and the signatures appended to it in responsible journals. Has all the money been returned? Many people's names were used when they had not given consent. Is that honourable?

I am pleased to say that my hon. Friend the Member for Southwark (Mr. Gunter), who was involved, took steps immediately to write and to say: I have been making inquiries as to how it came about that my name was included as signing the advertisement appearing in the New Statesman. I had no knowledge of it. I am sorry and hope that you will accept my apology. I can assure you very vehemently that it will not happen again. My hon. Friend was very upset, and no doubt many others were. However, the folly of this is that the charge has been made and that many people will have read it but that few will have seen the withdrawal. When irresponsible speeches are made, the headlines in all the African newspapers may not be factually correct, and anybody Who tries to correct them will not get the same Press.

I would like now to turn to the most recent events in the three territories concenned. First, as we have seen, in Nyasaland we now have virtually a completely black Government, with only a few whites in the territory, and Dr. Banda obviously to be the next Prime Minister. I would not be so "cagey" as was the right hon. Gentleman in his first speech at the conclusion of the meetings, when he said: The constitutional proposals which we are announcing provide for Cabinet government under the leadership of a Prime Minister in Nyasaland for the first time in its history. In typical Butlerian phraseology he went on: Politics is, of course, an inexact science, and I should not chance my arm. I am, however prepared to gamble on the strength of my long and varied political experience and hazard a guess that when the time comes the Governor will in all probability find himself looking to Dr. Banda to fill that honoured position. I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will not always be as cautious as that when dealing with African affairs.

We have seen rapid changes in all three territories recently. Independence is round the corner for Nyasaland. What of the future of these territories? Is it the intention that Nyasaland should carry on inside the Federation, or is it to secede? Anyone who has seen the country and who has studied its economy knows that secession without outside economic aid is economic suicide for Nyasaland. I note that it was reported that the right hon. Gentleman and Dr. Banda did not formally discuss secession, but it must have come up in many other talks, and in winding up the debate tonight the right hon. Gentleman should reveal to what extent it was discussed and whether it is intended by Dr. Banda to take Nyasaland out of the Federation.

We should be completely aware of the facts. Since federation, Nyasaland has received from the Federal Government alone £341 million and is receiving aid at the rate of £6 million a year. If Nyasaland secedes, it is possible that that aid will completely cease. Who will then pay? Will it be the British taxpayer? If, for a political reason, Nyasaland is taken out of an economic alliance, will it successfully plead with Her Majesty's Government to continue the £6 million a year? The Government must not sign a blank cheque to Nyasaland if it intends to make the economic life of its own people and those of its allies in the Federation more difficult by secession, and that is what secession will do.

Already, 150,000 Nyasas work in Southern and Northern Rhodesia and send money back to their own country every week or every month. If secession comes about, it is possible that they will have to return to their own country, and they and their country will be the poorer for that and there will also be increased unemployment in Nyasaland. Secondly, there is bound to be a slow down in investment from Northern Rhodesia and Southern Rhodesia and economic sanctions may also be applied. Thirdly, if the economic climate deteriorates and if there is secession, all the whites in Nyasaland who want to remain federal citizens will go south into Northern and Southern Rhodesia and Nyasaland will find it difficult to pay all the compensation required—and the right hon. Gentleman mentioned compensation.

If the farmers and landowners and tea and tobacco planters, and so on, wish to leave Nyasaland and to go south, that will cost £30 million in compensation and if those in industry and commerce desire to do the same they will be a further £10 million in compensation.

Sir Godfrey Nicholson (Farnham)

Why should that involve compensation? My right hon. Friend was talking about compensation for expatriate civil servants.

Mr. Mason

I am coming to that. If the same territory is obliged to wipe off federal and public debts, that will cost another £40 million and another £5 million for the federal civil servants who wish to go south and no longer work in Nyasaland. That gives a global sum of roughly £85 million.

That is roughly what would happen. Is anybody taking time to consider all the economic effects of Nyasaland's secession from the Federation? What about the federal public services, the post offices, the roads, railways, power, airways and health services which are run and controlled by the Federal Government and not by Nyasaland but whose advance has been tremendously assisted by federal efforts?

It is almost impossible for Nyasaland, if it is to make any economic progress, to finance or maintain many of these public services. I hope that the First Secretary of State will give more serious consideration to this problem; and this applies also to politicians and to leader writers in the Press, before they start to talk glibly about Nyasaland's secession from the Federation.

Northern and Southern Rhodesia estimate that they will lose about £2 million worth of trade if Nyasaland secedes. As they would save £6 million which they give to Nyasaland at the moment, and would be able to turn that back into internal investment, the £2 million would soon be offset. There is some talk about Nyasaland forming an economic group with Tanganyika and Uganda. Tanganyika is poverty-stricken, and Uganda is not much better off. There are no transport routes in their inland territories. They have very little industrial development, and there is not much chance of rapid development. If Nyasaland secedes, as anyone who has studied the problem knows, the people concerned will have turned the clock back economically many years and it will be to the economic detriment of all who reside in Nyasaland.

Mr. Jeremy Thorpe (Devon, North)

May I interrupt the hon. Gentleman, because I am very interested in this point? Is he saying that even if the people of Nyasaland want to secede, because it will be economically disadvantageous they should not be allowed to do so?

Mr. Mason

I do not want Nyasaland to secede at all. But, politically, feeling is so strong that they want some severance. I agree, in the last resort, with the hon. Member for Merton and Morden (Mr. Atkins), who suggested that for political reasons there may be a breakup of the Federation and that there should be some association or economic alliance thereafter. We ought to bear clearly in mind the economic severance of the nation if secession were to take place.

As to Northern Rhodesia, in spite of the gloomy forecasts about the elections there, a black majority has really emerged. The total number of black Africans who are now eligible to sit in the Legislative Assembly outnumber the whites and even the United Federal Party. The United Federal Party received 15 votes, Mr. Kaunda's party received 14 votes and Mr. Nkumbula's party received five. I know that there are some frustrating by-elections at the moment, but even at this stage the black Africans are in the majority in the Legislative Assembly. The right hon. Gentleman says that we should wait until the results of the pending by-elections before taking any further steps. This is wise and prudent, but, as he knows, there may be frustrations again. In spite of that, however, I think some attempt should be made to allow these Africans in Northern Rhodesia to rule.

There was a possibility, which I think is now remote, of an alliance between the U.F.P. and the African National Congress, but it would appear that Mr. Nkumbula and Mr. Kaunda are getting closer together, and they may form a coalition. If so, they would be in a majority. The situation at the moment does not allow them government unless they have 23 seats, but they are very near to it. It would be stupid to demand a fresh constitution and fresh elections when they have here, in spite of all the difficulties of the election system, a black African majority. This is worthy of a trial period.

Later, they might tidy up the election system and have another election with a better electoral role. The two African leaders, Kaunda and Nkumbula, should not receive any encouragement to their demands for fresh elections and another constitution until a suitable administration has been exercised by these people. There is no point in fanning the flames of Africanisation. I appeal for sane, sober and statesmanlike rule from them and for more sober speeches.

This brings me to the most difficult of the three territories, Southern Rhodesia, where the only hope for the future is to have a genuinely non-racial state to recognise each other as fellow Rhodesians with a common loyalty and common hope for the future, working together for the future of all. There must he no reservations, there must be no holding back. Those are the words of Sir Edgar Whitehead, the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia, addressing the U.F.P. Congress an 9th November, in Southern Rhodesia.

Sir Edgar went on to say: I have found a very natural inclination for those who realise what a revolutionary change this is in thinking compared with past years to say, 'well, we'll agree with the principle but there are certain things we'd like to hold back.' He also said: I do ask you to go the whole way, to accept in full, honestly and sincerely, the doctrine of the completely non-racial state. That was a most encouraging and liberal comment from the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia. It is certainly a noticeable change and indicates a great step forward in the worst of the three States.

At the moment elections are in the offing, but there is in Southern Rhodesia an all-white party, usually called the Dominion Party, although it is now called the Rhodesian Front. People should remember this When they are thinking about Sir Edgar Whitehead and Sir Roy Welensky. They should think about those who are far to the right of them and who belong to the Rhodesian Front. They have a policy which is a standstill policy. They do not believe in integration at all. Indeed, this is almost past history now. They are using the South African method, and it would be a sad day for the Southern Rhodesian people, irrespective of colour, if this party managed to gain power. Indeed, South Africa would have been extended to Southern Rhodesia overnight.

The other party led by Sir Edgar Whitehead, the United Federal Party, is pledged to change the Land Apportionment Act. It was never well liked. Nevertheless, the pledge has been made and it is intended to change the Act drastically. It is a pledge to satisfy the insistent demand of the African people for more and better primary and secondary education. As the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia said, this is an absolute necessity. This party has agreed to be flexible on the franchise so that there will increasingly be more black Africans on the electoral roll. More will qualify and more will get representation. This is a much more forward-looking policy than the policy they had in the past. I know that it is easy to say, "It is not before time" or, "It is too late", but the fact is that it is happening and we should not decry it. We ought to encourage it.

It is regrettable that the Africans are not politically participating in this election as much as they should. Z.A.P.U. has been banned, and this is another sad story in African affairs of an African party feeling frustrated and, at the same time, intimidating some of the Africans who belonged to the party which the whites are administering. This results in the house arrest, or placing in a restricted area, of Joshua Nkomo, the leader of the party. So often this has happened, this stupid martyrdom of African leaders, who eventually, not necessarily because of their ability but because of their martyrdom, will come back as leaders.

Looking at the whole situation in Central Africa, Nyasaland is on the verge of self-government and Northern Rhodesia has its first African majority in the Legislative Assembly, and if there is a coalition there is a possible chance of black African rule. In Southern Rhodesia, the pending election will determine how fast a non-racial State with increasing black African administration will emerge. But at the moment there is a great deal of dust and the First Secretary will have to wait until all of it has settled. He will then have his toughest job, namely, to assess the value and progress of these new administrations and then to encourage them, irrespective of colour, to work together for the economic well-being of all their peoples.

I trust that this will be the right hon. Gentleman's aim. If it is, I sincerely hope that he succeeds.

6.41 p.m.

Sir Godfrey Nicholson (Farnham)

I had not intended to speak in the debate until I heard the speech of the hon. Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason). I was delighted with his speech. I agreed with 80 per cent. and disagreed with 20 per cent. of it; but I was delighted with it because it broke away from the purely party approach that we have had in the speeches which have been made so far.

One of the tragedies of Africa is that it gives hon. Members on both sides of the House, and each party, the opportunity to ride their hobby horses. My hon. Friends who have extreme Right-wing views ride their hobby horse and members of the rather wet Left ride their hobby horse. But Africa is not a suitable subject for political hobby horses or for party politics as carried on in this country. That is why I deplored the speech of the hon. Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey). This is a most ill-chosen time for this debate, with by-elections pending in Northern Rhodesia and elections pending in Southern Rhodesia. This is, of course, why my right hon. Friend the First Secretary cannot answer today many of the questions put to him. I welcomed the speech of the hon. Member for Barnsley, because it broke away from the party political divisions in the House.

Let me say what I agreed with in the hon. Member's speech. I agreed with his condemnation, which required some courage, of his hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, East. whose speech was, to my mind—I hate saying this, because I like the hon. Gentleman very much personally—was an effort to make bricks without straw. However, he dropped so many bricks that it did not matter that he had no straw. His was a deplorable effort.

I disagree with the approach of the hon. Member for Barnsley to Nyasaland and to the dissolution of the Federation. What is his alternative in view of the fact that Nyasaland unanimously desires secession? It is no good pretending that anyone in this House or in Africa could keep Nyasaland in the Federation by force. He must face the fact that Nyasaland means to secede. I bet 100 to 1 that my right hon. Friend has agreed to that with Dr. Banda. It is no good saying that secession is impracticable or nearly impossible.

Mr. Mason

I put forward what I thought were the facts about what could happen economically in Nyasaland. I do not want Nyasaland completely to break away. There may be some form of secession, perhaps a political break up, but not necessarily an economic break up.

Sir G. Nicholson

I am glad that the hon. Gentleman has said that; it brings us much closer together.

We must all face the fact that federation is detested by the majority of Africans in the Federation, and we must let them go out of one door before they come in at another. Let us hope that only an infinitesimally small period of time lapses while they are out of the building 'altogether. If Dr. Banda and his Malawi Congress and the more than 99 per cent. of those who supported them in free elections, with no intimidation, determine not to have the present form of federation, they must be allowed to secede before entering a new federation.

I differ from the hon. Member for Barnsley in his fanciful picture about compensation. If, as is extremely unlikely, the European population in Nyasaland wished to emigrate to Southern Rhodesia, there would be no call for compensation. In fact, exactly the opposite is likely to happen. If the hon. Gentleman had followed the course of the conference, as I am sure he did, he would have realised that Mr. Blackwood and the U.F.P. members of the conference behaved in a most statesmanlike way and, indeed, with generosity. I pay tribute to them for that.

If Nyasaland seceded, it would certainly lose the contribution made to it from the Federation, and it is true that help from this country would be required. But the astronomic figures of compensation which the hon. Member for Barnsley produced exist only in his imagination. The employees in the federal health service would continue to be employed in Nyasaland. The same applies to the other services. The only people for whom compensation would be required would be, I hope, the few expatriate members of the Civil Service for whom we shall be answerable.

Mr. Mason

The hon. Gentleman must recognise that the white people in Nyasaland who wish to remain federal citizens but not to reside in Nyasaland because of secession would have to go south to Northern or Southern Rhodesia. Many of those people will be federal civil servants and those who have built up their plantations in Nyasaland.

Sir G. Nicholson

The hon. Gentleman is entitled to speculate, but I do not believe that what he says has a shadow of substance. I may be wrong and he may be right, but it has nothing to do with the point that no compensation would be payable to them if federation collapses. We cannot compensate people just because they are no longer federal citizens. I am sorry that I have the support of the hon. Member for Leeds. East, which rather alarms me.

I thoroughly agreed with the basically optimistic approach of the hon. Member for Barnsley. I believe that we in this House tend to be over-alarmed and over-frightened by much that is said and written, whether it be by Sir Hugh Foot or by anybody else. Anyone who has spent even a short time in Central Africa —the hon. Member for Barnsley and I have spent the same time there; I did not go under the same auspices as he did, or, indeed, under any auspices—knows that there is vast good will there, particularly in Southern Rhodesia.

It is quite illusory to portray the ordinary European inhabitant of Southern Rhodesia, or of any other part of the Federation, as being determined at all costs to maintain white supremacy, and to picture the ordinary African leader as inflammatory and wanting a repetition of what happened in the Congo. What impresses me about Central Africa is that, in spite of blunders, blindnesses, and stupidities on both sides, the political leaders are full of good will and are determined to do their duty.

The real pathos of the situation is that it is so easy to put oneself into anyone's position and to realise that one would take exactly the same view. It is easy to see why the advocates of the European view shoot at one target and the advocates of African liberty shoot at another. The supporters of the Federation point out its economic benefits and supporters of African freedom point to its political deficiencies. I beg hon. Members not to rush into extremes of pessimism. That is my first plea. The faults committed in Central Africa are faults not of evil-mindedness or wickedness, but of lack of imagination, as we constantly show in our domestic politics in this country. I beg the House to recognise that if this hand is played properly, and with care and honesty, the outlook is not altogether black.

I say to my right hon. Friend the First Secretary that I have been in close touch with many of the people who were at the conference on Nyasaland. They all said to me that my right hon. Friend was a brilliant and clever politician, but they realised that whatever decision he made would be made honestly. He impressed them with his 100 per cent. honesty and with his 100 per cent. good will. If he has achieved that, if it is known, as it is known, throughout Central Africa that, whatever decisions my right hon. Friend comes to, it will be an honest decision, without fear or favour, without prejudice or bias, then indeed the outlook is not too bad.

That is why I deeply regret this debate at this moment, and why I regret speeches like those of the hon. Member for Cardiff, West (Mr. G. Thomas) and those others which we shall hear from both sides of the House today perhaps from a party angle, playing the old political game here, that because one side says "Yes" the other says "No".

Mr. Healey

I deeply respect the hon. Gentleman's sincerity on this, but he must realise that we on this side of the House, the majority of us, at any rate—I know that there are different views, such as have been expressed by my hon. Friend the Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason)—have felt deeply and profoundly ever since federation was first proposed that it was a profound disaster. We have taken this view consistently right through against the arguments to the contrary from the Government. It is really no good pretending that we are taking this position on party lines. We would like nothing better than to agree, as we agreed on Nigeria and we agreed on Tanganyika, but there is a profound and sincere difference of opinion here, and the hon. Baronet must not seek to belittle it by pretending that it is adopted on our side for purely partisan reasons. It is not.

Sir G. Nicholson

Well, I am not impugning the hon. Member's sincerity or honesty. I am saying, first, that to call for this debate at this moment, when there are elections in Southern and in Northern Rhodesia, at a time when my right hon. Friend is engaged in the most delicate part of a very delicate task, was not in the public interest. I may be wrong in attributing it to party political prejudice. It may be just stupidity. But I deeply regret it.

I look at the terms of the Motion. At a moment when the situation is, as I have said, exceedingly delicate the Motion calls upon Her Majesty's Government to dissolve the present Federation"— presumably, straight away— and to promote constitutional reforms"— presumably, straight away, and the whole thing, as it has been done, is not statesmanship. I can assure the hon. Member that he has not impressed the House or the country by his speech today and that his party, or his hon. Friends who agree with him, have not impressed the House or the country with their statesmanship. What I am saying is that the feelings which are aroused by what the hon. Member for Barnsley calls "inflammatory speeches" either on the one side or the other, including equally ridiculous speeches from this side attacking the Africans, do not help.

Mr. Healey

This is a point which several hon. Members have made, that the Opposition has timed this debate badly. I ask the hon. Gentleman to consult his right hon. Friend, when he will find that the actual timing of the debate was by agreement by both sides.

Sir G. Nicholson

The hon. Member is trying to lead me on to very dangerous ground in reporting private conversations. My right hon. Friend is, at the moment, not here, and all I can say is that I do not believe that my right hon. Friend wanted this particular moment for a debate.

Mr. Healey

He never welcomes a debate at any moment.

Sir G. Nicholson

I do not believe that my right hon. Friend chose this time for a debate. It does not help him in these difficult negotiations. I just do not believe it.

But I will conclude my speech by making a plea for a cooling off of party spirit. If I have done anything to arouse it, I am sorry. I, for one, have the greatest confidence in my right hon. Friend, and I believe that all those who have come in contact with him in Central Africa have the same confidence in him. I should like to send from this House to Dr. Banda and Nyasaland a message of good will for a successful conclusion of the conference. Dr. Banda is a personal friend of mine, so I may be biased in this respect, but I believe that the statesmanship shown by him and all those at the conference, including the Europeans, means that the outlook for Central Africa is not as black as many people have painted it.

6.55 p.m.

Mr. Jeremy Thorpe (Devon, North)

The hon. Baronet the Member for Farnham (Sir G. Nicholson) was somewhat shocked, he tells us by the political controversy engendered by this debate, and the right hon. Gentleman the Chief Secretary who opened for the Government seemed distressed and somewhat amazed by the political controversy engendered by this issue, hut, whether we like it or not, this is one of the great political issues of the day, and it is one of the issues upon which people feel passionately, not merely on both sides of the House but with crossings between the two major parties.

There is this extraordinary doctrine in the Tory Party that, when there is a Tory Government in power, if one holds back one's criticism, then one is being high-minded, showing great statesmanship, putting the nation first; but if one shows opposition, then one is being unpatriotic, one is rocking the boat, one is putting party before country. This, I must say, is a doctrine which never applies in the Tory Party when that party is in opposition, but it applies when it is in power, and, quite obviously, what the Tory Party would do if it could would be to keep the Opposition as a sort of tame eunuch merely to be brought out on occasion to show that the basic geography of democracy still exists in this House.

I have been consistently opposed to enforced political federation not merely since the Tory Party took power but since the Labour Party sent out two Ministers to Central Africa in the autumn of 1951 when the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Llanelly (Mr. J. Griffiths) and the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Smethwick (Mr. Gordon Walker) received overwhelming evidence of African opposition to the idea of federation, and when, notwithstanding that opposition, the Victoria Falls conference was held, at which no African was represented from Southern Rhodesia—because they boycotted it—and in which a Press statement was put out afterwards, on 21st September, saying that, with the exception of the African representatives, the principle of federation was received with favour—with the exception of African opinion in those territories. Of course, the London conference was then planned and subsequently carried on. At no stage during the Labour Government was African consent a condition precedent to federation, and the Tory Government carried it on, and, as we know, forced it through in the teeth of African opposition.

When I heard the hon. Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason) telling us of his interesting conducted tour I wondered whether he had visited any of the prison camps, such as I did—and which I was fortunate, or perhaps unfortunate, enough to see—where, for example, I saw at Kanjedza prison camp a man who had been detained, so far without trial and still without charge, at the time of emergency. I wondered whether the hon. Member saw the effect of any of the emergency legislation, much of which had subsequently to be withdrawn, because the outcry in Southern Rhodesia, and of people all over the world, was so great that even the Federal and Territorial Governments had to give heed to it. I remember, in this country of great partnership, seeing the Prime Minister of this country introducing Sir Edgar Whitehead and Mr. Joshua Nkomo at Lancaster House during the great Federation review. One was the leader of African opinion, the other of European. They had never met before, and they had to come to London, and it was the British Prime Minister who introduced them.

I wonder also whether the hon. Member for Barnsley had the experience, which I did, when I walked into Harari, the African township on the edge of Salisbury. Of course, hon. Members will realise that one has to live in that quarter depending on one's colour, and, of course, I was committing an offence by visiting this one, because I should have received a pass, I should have got a permission slip to entitle me to go into that area; but I chose to break that fundamental law.

As I was strolling around, talking to a few Africans, one African came up to me, who, I subsequently discovered, was a school teacher, and he asked, "Which country do you come from?" I asked, "What makes you assume that I do not live here?". He said, "You would not be a Southern Rhodesian. You would not be walking round this native township if you were. You would not be coming round and talking to people if you were a local. The only people we ever see who come into the township to talk to us are those who come from foreign countries, who are politicians, writers, or journalists. Would I be right?" I said, "Yes, you are", and he said, "This is the trouble. We have virtually no contact between the European and African communities." It is very much better now than it was, but when a person goes into an hotel in Salisbury he has to ask whether he can invite his African friends to visit him there, or whether it is still verboten.

I turn to Nyasaland. I met Dr. Banda in Rome when he came out of prison, and I said to him, "There is no doubt that you will eventually be Prime Minister of Nyasaland, because you have graduated. You have been through the university course which Britain usually provides for her colonial Prime Ministers". I am delighted that next February Dr. Banda will become the Prime Minister of that territory.

Perhaps we can remember—it is not very long ago—what was said about Nyasaland. We had the first massacre plot. That was upset by the Devlin Report which the party opposite was not prepared to accept. The main difficulty of which one is conscious in these debates on federation is persuading the party opposite to accept the obvious and then to have the courage to implement, and if one thing is obvious it is that we cannot force political federation on any people or persons against their will. I believe that the reason why we have had this third conference, which has ended in agreement—and I congratulate the right hon. Gentleman on it—is that obviously the issue of secession was discussed, if not at the conference certainly outside it, and, knowing the pathological hatred which Dr. Banda has of federation—a term that was subsequently used in the Monckton Report, I cannot believe that he would have agreed to sit down at a table and talk about internal self-government for Nyasaland if he had not been given certain undertakings in regard to secession.

Here I agree with the hon. Member for Farnham. If this undertaking has been given, I hope that when the right hon. Gentleman winds up the debate he will Dome out into the open and say so, because this is not a situation for political double-talk. It is not a situation for ambiguities and the finesse of the innuendo 'which we have become accustomed to receive from the Bench opposite. It is a time for clear speaking.

I believe that the Government were right to have entered into this undertaking. We all remember how we were told that there was intimidation at the time of the last elections. This was investigated and one or two cases of U.F.P. intimidation were proved, but none against the Malawi Congress Party.

We know that there is a three-year development plan for about £19¼ million for Nyasaland. We know that its budget for 1962–63 will have a deficit of £1 . million, and we know that one-quarter of the total budget will be met by grants-in-aid from the United Kingdom. My point is that the argument that was always used to force federation on an unwilling African majority is that it had such tremendous economic advantages. It is perfectly true that in theory it has, and indeed in practice it has. That was the argument for forcing through federation.

The same argument is now being used for maintaining federation—that it has tremendous economic advantages—and I think that the House must try to put itself into the position of the emerging African territories who see in the north Uganda and Tanganyika which have achieved their independence, Kenya which is rapidly moving towards it, Nigeria and Ghana to the north and western coast which have attained it, and yet are being told "You cannot have your independence in the same way because it is to your economic advantage that you should be deprived of it and retained within this Federation."

Whatever the economic disadvantages, the people in Nyasaland are genuinely intent on seeking political secession from the Federation, and the only opportunity of any form of economic co-operation being negotiated between the territories is to give them the right of political secession first. I think that this is vital, and I hope that tonight we shall hear a little about the Commissioners whom the right hon. Gentleman has sent out who are going into this question of whether Nyasaland can survive economically independent of the Federation and what sort of alternative association or status they would suggest. I hope that we shall hear something about this, because the right hon. Gentleman did not mention it in his opening speech.

If, as I believe is inevitable, Nyasaland opts to exercise the right of political secession, do not let us in the name of economic progress force them into some alternative economic association unless and until it has their political consent. This is crucial in any future settlement for Nyasaland. I think that the problem of Nyasaland is probably solved.

I turn now to Northern Rhodesia. We all know why there has been the delay in that territory. There was the Macleod Constitution Mk. I, the Macleod Constitution Mk. II, and then the Maudling Constitution Mk. III. I remember going to see the Leader of the House in the autumn shortly after Constitution No. 2 had been brought in. It was a Liberal Party delegation and the right hon. Gentleman was adamant, as he has been publicly, that the second Constitution was no different from the first, it was merely that it had been touched up a little, refurbished slightly. We all know that it was a massive retreat from the first Constitution, partly because the Government were in trouble over the release of Jomo Kenyatta, and partly because they had announced to a horrified party that they were applying to join the Common Market, and they did not think that they could fight three battles at the same time, and therefore Northern Rhodesia was thrown to the dogs.

Finally this year we had the third Constitution, a Constitution which was so complicated and artificial that we are now to have the second batch of elections, and it is very doubtful whether there will be a proper filling of the national seats which still remain. In that case the Governor will have to nominate to the official seats, and if he is faced with such a situation I hope that he will have the good sense to appoint those who are clearly representative of the majority opinion in those territories.

I do not know whether the coalition between U.N.I.P. and A.N.C. will work, but assuming that it does, and assuming that the national seats combined with those two groups give an African majority, the Government will find themselves faced with a pro-secessionist Government in Northern Rhodesia, and the same principle will apply, that any future hope of economic co-operation between Northern Rhodesia and Southern Rhodesia will depend on Northern Rhodesia having the right to exercise political secession from the Federation. If, for political reasons, we try to keep them forcibly within a federation, we shall be doomed to failure. I have always held, and I said this in the last federation debate, that the chances of Northern Rhodesia and Nysaland—although I think now it is of academic consideration —wanting to remain within the Federation will depend upon the record in Southern Rhodesia. That is the linchpin.

The right hon. Gentleman led us to believe that this was a quiet and tranquil country. As the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Mr. D. Foot) pointed out, the right hon. Gentleman totally omitted to mention the fact that under the Unlawful Organisations Act the only organised body of African political opinion—Z.A.P.U.—has been banned. As we ought to know by now, we only have to ban a party which genuinely represents a large section of the population for it to be driven underground. I suppose that it is true to say that Mr. Joshua Nkomo's acceptance of the Premiership of Southern Rhodesia has been accelerated by five or ten years as a result of his having been placed under a restriction order. It is an inevitable process.

Again, the right hon. Gentleman failed to mention that under the amendment of the Law and Order Act a man who is an intimidator—and the term is legally defined—can be locked up for ten years. An intimidator is a man who remains at or near or watches or 'besets any premises or place; persistently follows some other person about; does any act or behaves in a manner likely to make some other person apprehensive about what may happen to him and his family or property … That is the great liberal regime, and that is the emergency legislation under which Southern Rhodesia operates at the moment.

Mr. Goodhew

Is the hon. Member really suggesting that, in other words, free run should be given to these intimidators? Does not he want to make sure that the will of the people is heard, and that when it is heard it really is the will of the people? He is suggesting that intimidators should be allowed a completely free run, and that this legislation is wrong?

Mr. Thorpe

How the hon. Member can believe that the will of the people can be sounded out under a Constitution which gives the majority of the population virtually no representation I do not know. As for his allegation about intimidators, let us beware. Those allegations were made in Nyasaland, against the Malawi Congress Party, but they were not proved. They were thrown around by many hon. Members opposite in connection with the massacre plot, but when the Devlin Commission went out there those allegations were not proved.

What I said—and what the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich said—was that when persons were detained under the emergency legislation in Nyasaland —it being a British Protectorate—they were told the reason for their detention. They were told what charge was being laid against them, and they had an opportunity to answer it, and to have legal representation. I went out on behalf of Justice—a three-party commission of lawyers of this country, which is affiliated to the International Commission of Jurists—to see if detainees knew why they were being detained, and also whether they had adequate rights of representation. This was the great thing in the emergency legislation of Nyasaland, which I was delighted to find. It was in accordance with the highest traditions of British justice.

But that is not found in Southern Rhodesia. It is not merely that a man may be detained and thereafter his detention may continue so long as is necessary in the view of the Minister of Justice, but that the Minister may impose similar restrictions on any individual whatsoever for a period of three months if he deems it desirable, without any right of trial or any judicial examination. That is why I say that the amended Law and Order Act does nothing to see that elemental justice is regarded. Clearly, today it is not.

We have all heard of the case of Chief Justice Tredgold who resigned, who has said that this recent legislation was the beginning of a police State. Faced with this situation, and with this repressive legislation, together with the banning of the main African party, what do the Government do? They hand back by constitutional reform most of the emergency powers they possess—chiefly concerned wth disallowance—and immediately make a loan of £3. million to Sir Edgar Whitehead, who says that this is unquestionably an expression of confidence in his administration. So it is.

Nevertheless, we still remain answerable in the United Nations for the behaviour of the Southern Rhodesian Government; indeed, even with the harlot's progress a little short-lived pleasure was derived. But Britain is the spokesman at the United Nations. We have given over most of our reserve powers, but we still remain responsible in the world forum. This is no time for double-talk from the Government. They brought in a political federation for which the economic arguments were strong, but which was rammed through in the teeth of the African opposition. It was therefore doomed to failure. It is now virtually certain that Nyasaland has been told that she will have the right to secede. Whatever Sir Roy Welensky may say. Nyasaland certainly will secede, and there is a strong possibility that we shall have an African majority in Northern Rhodesia which is similarly in favour of secession.

First, we must say that there can be no independence for any of the three constituent territories until they have full internal self-government based on the majority of the population. We must also say that if it is the wish of any constituent territory to secede it may have power to do so.

If we accept the view that the three constituent territories have a political right to secede, what of the economic future? If those territories are given their right it may be that some form of economic association, along the lines of the old East Africa High Commission Territories, may emerge. It may be possible to get co-operation on matters of transport, communications, power and currency. But we must realise that the political issue must first be settled.

I hope, therefore, that hon. Members will not think that the political aspirations of the people of these territories may be summed up as pounds, shillings and pence. That was the tone of the speech made by the hon. Member for Barnsley, which I greatly regretted. We have failed. Politically it has not been a success, and it is only intellectually honest that the House should recognise the fact and say so publicly.

7.18 p.m.

Mr. Victor Goodhew (St. Albans)

I am grateful for this opportunity to address the House on this very important subject, but I am sorry that the debate has taken place at this moment. It is all very well for the hon. Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) to say that any other timing would have been unsatisfactory. Looking at the wording of the Motion we can only conclude that if we had wanted to be as mischievous as possible we should have found it difficult to move a more damaging Motion at this moment.

When my right hon. Friend the First Secretary has taken a great deal of trouble to get through this Nyasaland Constitutional 'Conference, concentrating on discussion of constitutional issues and avoiding the question of secession until after elections in the other territories, we find the Opposition moving this Motion calling for the dissolution of the Federation at once. It is most mischievous.

We then have to remember that both in Northern and Southern Rhodesia two new constitutions are being put into effect. In Southern Rhodesia we are awaiting elections and in Northern Rhodesia we have had the principal elections and have the by-elections to follow in the national seats. Yet the Motion asks for constitutional reform before the new constitutions have even been attempted. At such a time this Opposition Motion can be regarded only as highly irresponsible.

The tragedy of Central Africa is the widespread ignorance throughout this country and other parts of the free world about conditions out there. This ignorance is exploited by those who wish to see chaos in that part of the world, and we should be making a grave mistake if we did not face up to the aims of these people who would like to see chaos in Central Africa. We have seen it produced in the Congo and we see the same element determined to try to destroy such order as there is in Katanga. We have seen attempts in Angola by terrorists from outside to break the Portuguese Government's hold there.

Mr. Thorpe

And a jolly good thing too.

Mr. Goodhew

I do not know whether the hon. Member has been there or made inquiries.

Mr. Thorpe

I have been there.

Mr. Goodhew

I am sorry that the hon. Gentleman did not refer to it in his speech. Perhaps he would have been out of order if he had done so, and I might have been out of order to follow him. The fact is that this was an adventure which originated from outside Angola, and it is just another example of the influences which are seeking to create chaos in Southern Africa. We have Communist funds going into Kenya and huge sums going into the Central African Federation, and there is no doubt that they are 'being used to disrupt British influence and to put complete chaos in its place. The situation would then be ripe for Communism. We should not forget the suffering which would follow to the African people if the type of chaos which we have seen in the Congo spread throughout the rest of Southern Africa. It is astonishing to me that there are so many, who know nothing at first hand of this part of the world, who seem to be ready to help in this plot.

I was disturbed to find, when in the Federation two weeks ago, that reports in the British Press gave an entirely false impression of what was happening in Salisbury. We read in British newspapers that white people were walking the streets in fear and terror of their lives. I looked outside my hotel window in Salisbury and saw white children being looked after by African nannies, who in turn were being paid great attention by African boy friends. The parents might have been miles away, quite unconcerned about any threat to the white children. Yet we were told in Britain that conditions in Salisbury were such that no white person could walk about without fear and terror. This sort of thing is causing grave damage to Rhodesia and the Federation.

Reference has been made to the advertisements of the Defence and Aid Fund in newspapers recently. It is astonishing that people of great responsibility in this country, including hon. Members opposite and the Leader of the Liberal Party, should be trapped into signing a document which carries so many misrepresen- tations and can do so much damage. Sir Hugh Foot resigned with a rather flambloyant political gesture and one wondered why, if he had his doubts about British policy, he did not ask to go to the territory to see for himself. It is most important that people should have some sort of idea of the conditions in the country with which they are dealing.

Mr. Thorpe

What of Sir Edgar Whitehead's speech?

Mr. Goodhew

Sir Edgar Whitehead made his speech at the United Nations, and many of the critics of his Government were profoundly impressed by his sincerity and by what he said. I fear that they were far too committed already to vote according to their views but, from those who have spoken to them outside the United Nations, it is clear that they were convinced by his attitude.

Mr. G. M. Thomson (Dundee, East)

I hope that the hon. Member realises the practical difficulties of the doctrine that only people who have been to a territory have any right to express views about it in the House. Is he aware that the Commonwealth Secretary has recently been imposing a federation on Aden without having been there, and that he visited it only yesterday?

Mr. Goodhew

I am not suggesting that one must have a hard-and-fast rule about it. I was dealing with the danger when a large number of people who have not been there expressed their views with some irresponsibility. I repeat what I said about Sir Hugh Foot—that if he felt so strongly he might surely have wanted to go to see for himself before making a gesture which could only be damaging to the Southern Rhodesian cause.

The hon. Member for Leeds, East did not come to his "Algeria" cry until later in his speech. Indeed, he has gone back a little way in saying that there is no immediate sign of the danger of an outbreak of violence and of uprising. In the past he has tended to suggest that this would automatically follow the Government's action. He also said that those who went to these countries often did not meet the leaders of the nationalist parties. I wish to emphasise that most people who go there try to see them.

I saw Mr. Mugabi of Z.A.P.U. less than 24 hours before the banning of the Z.A.P.U. party was announced, and I pleaded with him that he should denounce the terrorism of his party. But he was much too full of talk about the forces of resistance to the frightful constitution to consider such a thing, and he made it clear that he was not prepared, nor was Mr. Nkomo, to denounce the terrorism being practised by some of his followers It will be instructive this evening to sec how many hon. Members opposite, who have been out to the Federation and have seen themselves, follow the hon. Member for Leeds, East into the Lobby. I think that there is a grave danger in taking up a stand on what must be second-hand information.

It was quite interesting, sitting in Salisbury at the time of the banning of Z.A.P.U., to see reported in the Press and to hear announced on the radio that the hon. Member for Leeds, East was demanding that the Prime Minister of this country should call a meeting with Mr. Nkomo and Sir Edgar Whitehead about the banning of that party. If he had been able to see the conditions in and around Salisbury at the time he could not possibly have made such a ridiculous suggestion, because at that moment, when about 170 people had been put under restriction out of a population of 3. million, and the Z.A.P.U. party had been banned, suddenly all was peace and quiet. When Sir Edgar Whitehead went up to the African townships on the week-end following that Friday morning announcement, and drove around them, the African population turned out to cheer and applaud him, because they were so pleased that for the first week-end for months they could go to football matches and boxing matches, or take any other pleasure they liked out of the week-end, without being chivvied into going to a Z.A.P.U. political meeting by a band of thugs or beaten up, as one man was, who died as a result of being beaten up because he went to a football or boxing match instead of to a Z.A.P.U. meeting.

The House should remember that this was the position after the banning of Z.A.P.U., and it gives the lie to those who suggest that because extreme nationalists make far-reaching demands, these must be granted at once, as if the whole country were in a ferment and ready to blow the lid off. This is not so and never has been so in any of these territories.

There is no excuse, I think, for hon. Members opposite not realising that Mr. Nkomo has been leader of four different parties, each of which has had to be banned for indulging in violence and terrorism. Mention was made of the White Paper on the terrorism of Z.A.P.U. by the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Mr. D. Foot), but he did not go into detail or give the House the figures of all the oases involved.

The Motion refers to the wishes of the population. I wish to emphasise what I said to the hon. Member for Devon, North (Mr. Thorpe) in an intervention: we cannot know what the wishes of the people are if they are being terrorised. One point which has been made abundantly clear since the banning of Z.A.P.U. is that they did not have the support of the overwhelming majority of Africans in Southern Rhodesia. I suggest that if they had had that support, nothing could have prevented them from having the whole of Southern Rhodesia aflame within hours of the banning. The Whole countryside had dried up at the end of the dry season, and the people could have had a tremendous time if they had been out to demonstrate to the Government that they were backing Z.A.P.U. and objected to their leaders being put under restriction.

Mr. Thorpe

There is also the alternative suggestion that Z.A.P.U. did not wish to indulge in widespread violence.

Mr. Goodhew

But the party had been indulging in violence and terrorism, although only through its active members, who were pretending to represent the vast majority of Africans. In my view, in such conditions it would have been easy for the majority of the Africans to demonstrate that they felt strongly on this issue, but in fact the reverse was the case and they demonstrated their great relief at being released from this pressure exerted by the Z.A.P.U. intimidators.

The House should be reminded that Z.A.P.U. was banned not because it opposed the policies of the Southern Rhodesia Government but because it sought to use terrorism and violence to get its way. It is worth quoting a few words of Sir Edgar Whitehead: An African party expressing the legitimate aspirations of the African people, working on constitutional lines and keeping within the law, need have nothing to fear. What I will not tolerate is a party which seeks to obtain money by threats, commits murder and physical assaults on innocent people and compels people to join it by intimidation, deprives people of their liberty by compelling them to attend political meetings when they would rather have gone to church or a football match, declares that it will take over the government of the country by unconstitutional means, communicates with foreign powers with a view to overthrowing the legitimate government of the country, stirs up racial feelings and encourages hostility between the races. No party will be allowed again to attempt to force a one-party state on those who have a preference for other, legitimate political parties. I think that it is difficult for anyone in the House, on either side, to disagree with that as a reasonable policy for a Prime Minister who finds himself in the position in which Sir Edgar Whitehead found himself a few weeks back. Anyone who queries that must suggest that he supports violence rather than constitutional progress.

Mr. D. Foot

Surely the hon. Member realises that what he is quoting is simply an ex parte statement by Sir Edgar Whitehead and that there has been no impartial inquiry into these allegations comparable with the Devlin Commission in Nyasaland?

Mr. Goodhew

I know that the hon. and learned Member is a lawyer and hikes to pursue these matters on a rather legalistic basis, but I think that one has the right to form one's assessments of the men one meets and to decide who one feels inclined to trust when they express their views. My view about Sir Edgar Whitehead is that he was convincing, and from what I have seen I am prepared to accept his view, even if the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich is not.

The Southern Rhodesia Constitution was accepted originally by all except the extreme Right-wing Dominion Party. In fact, Mr. Nkomo himself welcomed it at the time as a great advance for Africans. In view of that fact and of the fact that it has a built-in ultimate majority for the Africans, it is absurd for people to suggest that we should not move to this stage first before discussing new advances.

The same comment applies to Northern Rhodesia, where the hon. Member for Leeds, East suggested that the Governor at this moment should be asked to form a Government of the two African parties before the by-elections are even out of the way.

Nyasaland is rather a different picture. I am not happy about conditions there—not as happy as some other hon. Members, even on this side of the House. We have there a one-party State with a man in Dr. Banda, who shows all the signs of basing his Whole administration on the Ghana model. We also have the very unattractive feature of his being welcomed back with cries of "Messiah" rather on similar lines to those in Ghana.

Sir G. Nicholson

If my hon. Friend studies the history of Nyasaland during the last year or two he will find that in comparison Dr. Banda has behaved as a constitutional statesman. There is an opposition party. When my hon. Friend says that it is a one-party State that implies that other parties are suppressed, but that is not the case. Does he realise that all African leadership is based on the chieftainship theory and there is what is called the charismatic atmosphere? By that I mean "anointing". There is something sacred about the chieftainship leadership. Dr. Banda cannot help being called a Messiah, but I know he is a most modest man who does not believe in that sort of thing. As an honest African, he believes in doing the best he can for his people.

Mr. Goodhew

I am grateful to my hon. Friend for that assurance, but there are people who hold slightly differing views about Dr. Banda and about the way in which he will try to carry on once he gets the power to run the country himself. On top of the violence which has taken place in Nyasaland—

Sir G. Nicholson

It has not taken place.

Mr. Goodhew

My hon. Friend mumbles that it has not taken place.

Sir G. Nicholson

I did not mumble. I say it has not taken place.

Mr. Thorpe


Mr. Goodhew

The hon. Member for Devon, North should keep quiet.

Mr. Thorpe

Will the hon. Member give way?

Mr. Goodhew

I shall not give way.

Mr. Thorpe

I challenge the hon. Member—

Mr. Speaker


Mr. Goodhew

The hon. Member for Devon, North must contain himself and Show patience.

In the past 12 months there have been twice as many cases of arson and violence in Nyasaland as there have been in Southern Rhodesia. Perhaps the hon. Member overlooks that. One of the difficulties is that the Attorney-General's Department earlier this year issued a directive to all police stations and police prosecutors throughout Nyasaland, saying that fall prosecutions for offences of threatening violence, proposing violence at assemblies and intimidation or arson and the like offences, shall be submitted to him for express direction before any action can be taken and that as a general rule no criminal process could be commenced without his express authority.

This has caused considerable concern because representatives of the C.A.N.U. party have been beaten up on five occasions without action being taken against Malawi. The Malawi News contained an express incitement to violence against the British journalist, Alan Hart, when it said: Whatever Alan Hart says or whatever others say, Alan Hart is an enemy of the people of this country.… He is a wicked man. Wicked men like this must not be tolerated. We do not care who punishes him or how he is punished. But he must be punished. I suggest that that kind of statement in the Malawi News is not likely to he construed as anything but a direct incitement against a person. I am not happy if such an incitement should be allowed to go unchallenged. I hope, now that I see from the White Paper on the Constitutional Conference that it is likely that a legal adviser will be appointed to the Governor in Nyasaland, that this adviser will be an entirely independent person, chosen perhaps from outside Nyasaland, who will be seen to be impartial and to look at this subject which is causing considerable concern to members of all parties in that country.

I say a word or two about the Federation. I am sorry that so many hon. Mem- bers have tended to represent it as if it were not a great and noble experiment. I think it has been. The important part to remember is that the main point of this experiment was to secure a State in which all races should co-operate together for the common good. We have not yet had a State of that sort in Africa. For this to happen obviously would be a great advance on what has happened elsewhere where it has tended to become a black administration, if not dictatorship, and the Europeans being finally chased out.

It is quite clear that the races in the Federation need each other. This lesson was learned too late in the Congo and it looks as if it may have been learned a little too late in Kenya where the economy is running down as the Europeans leave. We should not too readily write off the many economic advantages which federation has brought to all three territories.

At a time like this when very powerful countries in Europe find it necessary to combine economically to survive, it cannot be logical that we should be thinking in terms, as many people do today, of fragmenting what is already a very much weaker State. I hope that my right hon. Friend will not consider the question of any of these territories in isolation from the others nor allow himself to be pressed into taking action until some new acceptable form of association has been found. The work of the last 70 years can be so easily destroyed overnight. I should not like to think that my right hon. Friend was responsible for the suffering and misery that that would bring to many Africans.

Sir G. Nicholson

My hon. Friend has produced charges of intimidation in Nyasaland. The evidence which he has cited is five or six cases of arson and that a newspaper said a journalist was wicked and ought to be punished. That is a most damaging charge against the Government of this Protectorate. I invite him to withdraw.

Mr. Goodhew

I would not have mentioned those cases if I had not come back from Nyasaland feeling very disturbed about the maintenance of law and order. I am sorry that my hon. Friend takes that view, but I entertain these fears very deeply.

7.40 p.m.

Mr. Arthur Creech Jones (Wakefield)

It has become customary in this House when colonial problems are under discussion for certain hon. Members opposite to accuse Labour Members of playing at politics. It should be appreciated that hon. Members of my party are discharging their traditional and constitutional responsibilities when they raise issues of vital importance affecting the peoples under the control of Britain.

I take the view that it is right and proper at any time to direct the attention of the Government to policies which are not calculated to promote the welfare of the people in our charge. Therefore, I hope that this kind of charge, which has been made two or three times today, will not be repeated. We are concerned with securing the best possible solution of this problem in the interests of Central Africa. The whole conception of federation was denounced in a Royal Commission's Report before the war.

As has been pointed out, federation was brought in in defiance of African opinion throughout the three territories. It was not "a great and noble experiment". It was calculated to inflame the African population. The excuse offered was that sooner or later the Africans would become used to it. But it was a federation imposed on people contrary to their will, a federation which did not give equal representation to the three territories involved, a conspiracy deliberately concocted for the purpose of securing white or European ascendency in Central Africa.

I say this advisedly, because I was in certain of the negotiations with the three Governments concerned. I know what was in the mind of Southern Rhodesia. Southern Rhodesia wished to become an independent country with greater resources, a larger population than it had and a larger geographical area. Its terms were that it should be dominant in that federation. It was for all practical purposes amalgamation—amalgamation which had been rejected by the Royal Commission—under the name of federation.

While I had the responsibility of the Colonial Office I constantly opposed the idea and I have always been in opposition to the whole conception. It is said that there were certain economic advantages, advantages which, I suggest, could have accrued to the Central African Council. I remember, however, the manœuvre that deliberately destroyed the Central African Council, for the purpose of clearing the decks in order that amalgamation or federation—call it what you will—should be introduced. Indeed, I realise that federation was a deliberate conspiracy at the expense of the African people who everywhere had expressed their unanimous opposition to the whole conception. I opposed it because it gave ascendancy to one particular territory. It established European ascendancy and that was done in the teeth of the opposition of the people primarily concerned.

I wish to make a few constructive proposals about the problem before us. If I so desired I could express a great deal of criticism of the policies which have been pursued over the last ten years in respect of Central Africa, but I want to put other than criticisms to those who will be responsible in days to come for the future of this part of Africa. I refer, first to Nyasaland. It has been said that self-government will now be reached by two stages. We can, therefore, be satisfied that there is some understanding that federation will have to go, or at least that Nyasaland may enjoy the option of seceding from federation. There is no doubt that whatever the policy in London may be, Nyasaland will not continue inside the Federation for longer than it can help.

Then comes the point: how can Nyasaland live when her financial resources are curtailed as a result of coming out of the Federation? I shall deal with that, but I wish to correct the view that it is by the benevolence of the Federal Government that Nyasaland government has carried on in the past few years. The truth is that both the Federal Government and the Southern Rhodesian Government have benefited from Northern Rhodesian copper. It is the resources of the copper field which have kept the Federation going and made it possible for grants to be made to the Nyasaland Government. It has also kept Southern Rhodesia from bankruptcy.

In spite of the fact that the elections have given an African majority in Northern Rhodesia, it has a completely unjustifiable and intolerable Constitution. It is one which ought to go. The two main African parties are now together, but it is obvious that they cannot permit the continuance of so impossible a Constitution as the one which they endure at present. It is also incomprehensible., not only to the Africans but to the Europeans themselves—its fancy franchise; its insistence on racial discrimination, whatever is said about abolishing racial discrimination. This Constitution is intolerable, so unworkable, that it is impossible for it to continue. Therefore, we may expect two immediate demands once the African Government is established. There will be a demand for a new Constitution and there will be a demand for secession from the Federation.

From time to time in the House we have protested against the structure of the Southern Rhodesian Constitution. It is intolerable that the majority of the people should live under the limited representation that is now conceded. It is said that over a period of time it will be possible to amend the Constitution. But the Europeans are in possession of the Constitution. Consequently, the Constitution cannot be amended, unless there is a two-thirds majority in the Southern Rhodesian Parliament. This means that the majority of Africans represented by a small minority in Parliament can never hope to win over the Europeans who are in control. They are not likely to surrender to African demands. It will be, I think, a very long time, in spite of the very glowing speeches which the Southern Rhodesian Prime Minister is now making.

As I listened to today's debate, I remembered going to the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia twenty-five years ago and begging for changes in the treatment of Africans in his territory—the practice of segregation and of discrimination, and the denial of trade union rights to black workers. Nothing was done. That was twenty-five years ago. I am sure that we shall probably have to wait a very long time before we see the majority party now in possession of the Parliament of Southern Rhodesia conceding the rights which the Africans are demanding. This may be a pessimistic view.

I hope that Britain will use her utmost influence in trying to secure changes in the Constitution of Southern Rhodesia. I hope that Southern Rhodesia will not be given her independence until her Constitution has been so radically changed that at least the majority of the population of that territory is able to enjoy the proper rights of representative government.

I come to the Federation. It is clear that federation has meant for the three territories an intertwining of responsibilities and duties and an integration of functions and powers which cannot easily be dissolved without special legislation and with the consent of the four Governments involved. Therefore, while the discussions are proceeding in regard to the necessary constitutional changes which I have indicated, there should be a conference between the four Governments to determine which powers and responsibilities can be shed by the territorial Governments or taken over by them.

The difficulties of the Federation Constitution are well recognised, even by the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia himself. He believes that there should be some slimming of the Constitution, some readjustment of powers as between the respective territories and the Federal Government. The Federal Government undertakes such wide powers as economic planning and development of the three territories. It has the difficult questions of finance to control. It is concerned with defence, foreign policy, and so on. Many matters affecting the respective territories are now virtually in the hands of the Federal Government. If any one of the three territories falls out of the Federation it is important that it should be done by agreement, for it is important that there should be no breakdown in any one of the territorial Governments. Therefore, preliminary discussions should take place now before such a calamity arises from dissolution of the Federation.

It may be that certain economic benefits have come from federation. When the Central African Council existed there were certain common services in evolution. Some responsibilities and duties were undertaken by the Council. If the present Federation should pass and disintegration follow, there is no reason why, as has happened in the case of the West Indian Federation, some equivalent line to the West Indian collapse should not be taken. The responsibilities and duties now undertaken by the Federation could quite well be carried by a High Commission until the three territorial Governments were in agreement about the future.

There is no reason why there should not be some sort of association in Central Africa. But one cannot talk of association of the three territories until self-government has been properly reached. The African majorities in Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland will not agree to anything until federation is out of the way. I feel that because one or other of these territories will move out of the Federation, there should be immediate discussions alongside the constitutional discussions. Agreement can be reached as to how certain duties and responsibilities of the Federation should be retained or carried forward and what authority should be set up so that this shall be done.

I have always been a firm believer in association of the three territories. That was why I grieved very much when the Central African Council was dissolved. It had been a great dream of the late Mr. Oliver Stanley when he created it. During my period of office I saw the excellent work that it was doing. It was a matter of profound regret when it was decided, by Southern Rhodesia in the main, that the Council should go. Something could have been built on the model of the Central African Council, or perhaps on the model of the High Commission in East Africa.

We began the High Commission in East Africa in the face of a great deal of feeling and opposition, feeling which came from the Europeans as well as from sections of the Africans. The Commission established common services. It brought the three countries together, although those countries retained their independence and were all treated as equals. It brought the people together on a basis of equality in terms of race. I submit that the High Commission of East Africa still has something to suggest to us as to the kind of structure which might prove possible in Central Africa in the event of federation breaking down.

We must bear in mind that over a period of years our policies have had to change. As a colonial Power, once we believed in the dual mandate. Then we urged that there should be paramountcy of native interests. Then we urged that there should be partnership between races. Then we urged that there should be multi-racial relations. We now come to the point when we know that for Africans there can only be some form of parliamentary democracy. It should be established in these three territories on the basis of human equality and of citizenship.

The lamentable thing about the Government's Amendment is that it does not clearly indicate the lines along which the Government will go. That is the defect of the Amendment. To sum up, independence must not be conceded to Southern Rhodesia until her Constitution has been put right. But once the Constitutions of the respective territories have been amended, it is imperative that the African Governments of Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia, with the Government of Southern Rhodesia and the British Government, should determine the kind of authority which should be set up for voluntary association of the three territories.

8.1 p.m.

Mr. Humphry Berkeley (Lancaster)

I regret that my right hon. Friend the First Secretary of State is not here at the moment, because I should have liked to tell him—and I hope that the Under-Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations will convey this to him—of the widespread and striking praise that I have heard from all sides for his sympathy, wisdom and flair in the conduct of the Nyasaland Constitutional Conference. I met delegates from all of the parties who took part in the Conference, and it was a great tribute to my right hon. Friend that they had such confidence in him. I should also like to say—I am sure that my right hon. Friend, were he here, would not think me curmudgeonly—that perhaps Nyasaland was the easiest task which he had to face and that it was perhaps made somewhat easier by the historic decisions which were very courageously taken two or three years ago by my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. I think that in welcoming the Nyasaland Constitutional Conference settlement, we should honour the work done by my right hon. Friend when he was Colonial Secretary.

In addition to a general welcome of the outcome of the Constitutional Conference, there are two points which I should like to raise, one of which at least, I think, will interest my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations. That is in respect of expatriate civil servants. No one in the present House of Commons has taken more interest in the fate of expatriate civil servants than my hon. Friend. There are two problems. In the first place, do we really have to go through this performance of extracting from the Nyasaland Government compensation for expatriate civil servants which they certainly cannot pay and which we certainly will have to lend them?

It is arguable in the case of Ghana, for example, and some of the wealthier former dependent countries, that a reasonable contribution from them is proper. By saddling countries like Tanganyika and Nyasaland, the latter with an annual income per head of the population of £18, with compensation payments for expatriate officers, particularly when we have to lend the money ourselves, and in lending it call it aid, we are in a situation which could have been thought up only by some extraordinarily cunning bookkeeper at the Treasury. I do not think that it is very dignified for a country of our wealth to place this kind of burden on a very poor country like Nyasaland. We would also possibly avoid the continual wrangle one has to have with former colonial territories to put up their own expatriate pensions in order to keep them in line with the pensions in this country.

The second point may not be so popular, but I put it to my hon. Friend as being worthy of consideration. I have recently been to Tanganyika. We devised there a scheme of generous compensation, as we thought, in order to keep expatriates in Tanganyika. By the end of this year, 12 months after independence, a quite alarmingly large number of expatriate civil servants will have gone. If they were to stay their compensation would be greater, but they can get a lump sum compensation and go almost at once. I wonder whether it would not be possible for compensation to be frozen for two or three years after independence, thus ensuring that they would remain there for the first two or three years after independence unless their posts were specifically Africanised? It seems to me that if this were done it would bridge this appalling gap which has arisen in Tanganyika, and will doubtlessly arise elsewhere, that within a few months of independence large numbers of expatriate civil servants go. I should be grateful if my hon. Friend would ask the First Secretary of State to survey these points.

I should like to say a few words about Northern Rhodesia. We seem, all of us, to be conducting a geography lesson in this debate. The hon. Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason), who is not here at the moment, suggested that the outcome of the Northern Rhodesian Constitution was satisfactory because it appears to have just provided an African majority. I welcome this because I believe that an African majority was inevitable for Northern Rhodesia. But I still feel that it is an anomalous and unsatisfactory Constitution in which Mr. Kaunda's party gets two-thirds of the votes and one-third of the seats. I cannot help feeling that the hon. Member for Barnsley would feel slightly indignant if his party in the next election got two-thirds of the votes and one-third of the seats.

Mr. Dan Jones (Burnley)

He would be more than indignant.

Mr. Berkeley

I should have preferred specific minority representation for Europeans, more on the Kenya pattern, and I said so in the debate on the Northern Rhodesian Constitution at the time. However, the fact remains that whether we like this Constitution or not, it has provided a very substantial anti-federation majority in Northern Rhodesia.

Approximately three-quarters of the people who voted in the election in Northern Rhodesia voted against the continuance of federation. The First Secretary of State, when he paid his visit to Nyasaland in the spring of this year, indicated with, I think, reasonable clarity that he felt that Dr. Banda had been given a mandate to take Nyasaland out of the Federation. It would be very difficult for anyone to come to any other conclusion, because Dr. Banda got about 95 per cent. of the votes.

Now I believe that we have reached a situation in Northern Rhodesia where an almost equally clear decision, certainly an overwhelming one, although not quite as overwhelming as that in Nyasaland—against Federation has now been produced. I suggest to my hon. Friend who talked about the need to avoid being destructive, that in fact, whether we like it or not, the Central African Federation is now in the process of being destroyed because of the constitutions given by the Secretary of State for the Colonies to the two northern territories of Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland. When we find in Nyasaland 95 per cent. of the electorate against federation and in Northern Rhodesia, three-quartens of the electorate against federation, we must recognise the fact—and the Monckton Commission's Report recognised it quite clearly—that we cannot maintain federation without consent.

As a result of the Constitutions we have given those territories, the consent is quite clearly not there now, and whether or not we were to have a pro-Federation majority in Southern Rhodesia is irrelevant because, if we take away the two Northern Territories, the Federation ceases to exist. I would hope that in Northern Rhodesia we should see an African Government, and a coming together of Mr. Kaunda and Mr. Nkumbula. I should also like to see, before very long, a new Constitution in Northern Rhodesia which corresponds somewhat more accurately to the wishes of those Who have the vote at present.

I believe that when the British Government negotiated the Southern Rhodesian Constitution in 1961 they could have struck a very much tougher bargain than they did. I know that the argument against that is that we were trading reserve powers which we have never used and, therefore, presumably never could use, so that we were in fact, giving away very little and were lucky to get even that Constitution. I do not think that this is the case. Because the reserve powers had not been used, it certainly did not mean that they could not be used.

I do not believe that Sir Edgar White head would have invited the Commonwealth Secretary to this long Constitutional Conference in Southern Rhodesia if he had thought that those reserve powers did not matter. Of course he thought they mattered—that is why the Constitutional Conference took place. It is, therefore, not quite intellectually honest for us to disown all responsibility for the new Constitution. We have a very direct responsibility for it. Indeed, the Commonwealth Secretary was one of the principal negotiators in the Constitutional settlement.

To me, the tragedy of this Constitution is that, for various reasons, it is totally inadequate to meet African nationalist aspirations, but I believe that had the initiative been taken in the spring of this year we could have made relatively small amendments to the Constitution and got Z.A.P.U. to contest. As it is, we have pursued in Southern Rhodesia—I repeat, in Southern Rhodesia—a policy of delay and inaction that has been bought at a terrible price.

First, there has been the declaration of a state of emergency in Southern Rhodesia. Secondly, we have, as I believe, substantially reduced any chance of economic association between the two Northern Territories in the Federation and Southern Rhodesia. I do not believe that the Governments of Northern Rhodesia and Nayasaland will be prepared to deal with a Southern Rhodesian Government who have outlawed the main African national party and sent many of its leading members to detention without trial. The third price and, in some ways, the most important one from our point of view, is that we have been driven into a state of greater isolation at the United Nations than we endured even at the time of Suez.

Certain hon. Members on this side have today made a number of disparaging remarks about the United Nations, but I hope that we do not imagine that the United Nations is just a pack of Afro-Asian savages trying to stir up all the trouble they can throughout the Colonial Empire. That is far from being the case, as I know and as the First Secretary knows. A few weeks ago, in New York, I was at the United Nations, where I found those who were most mortified and embarrassed by our policy in Southern Rhodesia were our friends—the New Zealanders, the Australians, the Canadians and the Americans—all of whom have been driven into a state where they genuinely feel that they can no longer support us. The only people who viewed our discomfiture at the United Nations with any satisfaction at all were the South Africans and the Portuguese who, of course, have even greater problems in their own territories.

What saddens me about the developing pattern in Southern Rhodesia is that, as a Government, we have missed so many opportunities. In the first place, when the First Secretary was in Southern Rhodesia in May of this year, he could have used his very great persuasive powers to get Sir Edgar Whitehead and Joshua Nkomo together. It should have been the object of British policy to try to persuade the African nationalists to participate in the election, and not to go underground and become subversive. That is precisely what the present Chancellor of the Exchequer did with regard to Northern Rhodesia. In the end, my right hon. Friend was then able to make sufficient concessions to secure the participation of Mr. Kaunda's party in the election campaign. It must at all times be a prime object of our policy to persuade nationalists to work through the ballot box rather than to throw bombs. If we remove any reasonable access to the ballot box then, as President Nkrumah has discovered in Ghana, bombs are the alternative. That, I think, was the first missed opportunity.

The second missed opportunity came in July, when Sir Edgar Whitehead appealed to our Government for a £3½ million loan for development. I felt very strongly, and said so at the time, that we should have made that loan canditional on African political advance. It may be said that with a self-governing, or virtually self-governing country, one should not try to attach strings to aid but, this afternoon, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations told the House of the aid we are giving to India in her struggle against China, and told us, also, of the conditions we have laid down for the use of that aid; that is, that it should be used against the Chinese and not against Pakistan. I think that we could, without in any way impairing the constitutional position, have used that loan as a bargaining point.

The third missed opportunity was that we traded our reserve powers for a Constitution that provided for 15 African-elected members and for a Bill of Rights. Sir Edgar Whitehead chose to delay bringing in that part of the Constitution dealing with the Bill of Rights until after he had passed in the Southern Rhodesian Parliament the Amendments to the Law and Order Maintenance Act and the Illegal Organisations Act; both pieces of legislation were quite clearly in contravention of the Bill of Rights for which we had traded our reserve powers. I think it would have been right and proper for the First Secretary of State to have used his power to disallow those pieces of legislation as clearly infringing the terms of our bargain.

Incidentally, the voting qualifications set out in the Constitution itself are so absurdly high that I suppose that only about one-tenth of 1 per cent. of the African population is at present eligible to be on the A roll, and 1 per cent. of the African population is at present eligible to be on the B roll but, owing to the boycott, I suppose that only about one-third of 1 per cent. of the African population will even be on the B roll. In other words, only about 12,000 Africans will be able to go to the ballot when the election takes place later this month.

Sir Edgar Whitehead, in the United Nations, made great play of the fact that within 15 years we would have African majority rule in Southern Rhodesia. I just cannot see how that prophecy is calculated. There are about 3,000 Africans on the A roll at present. It is estimated by his own Minister of Justice, Mr. Stumbles, that approximately 1,000 Africans a year will acquire the necessary qualifications to get on to the A roll. These are very high qualifications indeed—I think £300 a year and four years' secondary education. On that basis it will be about 70 years before the Africans acquire a majority on the A roll. Then we must not forget that on the B roll, where Africans have a majority although few of them are qualified to be on the roll, the A roll voter has a 25 per cent. influence on the result.

I always felt that in looking at this Constitution it was irrelevant whether there were 15 black faces in the Rhodesian Parliament or not. What really mattered was who those Africans represented. The great mistake in this Constitution is that under present conditions Sir Edgar Whitehead and his party will virtually be choosing the B roll Members of Parliament as well as the upper roll ones because of the great narrowness of the franchise and because of the A roll influence upon the franchise.

I should like the Secretary of State to do two things in relation to Southern Rhodesia. First, I do not believe that the election can now be avoided. As the hon. Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey) said, it will be almost as pointless as the federal general election held a few months ago. I hope that the Secretary of State, after the election takes place, will first offer his services as a mediator to try and get a constitutional review of a more favourable character. Secondly, and most important, I hope that he will try to use the final weapon which we have, which is the granting of independence constructively to secure a satisfactory solution.

Again it may be said that Southern Rhodesia is virtually independent. It has internal self-government but it has not full independence and the only way it can get full independence is through an Act of Parliament passed in this House and in another place. I certainly could not vote in favour of an independence Bill for Southern Rhodesia unless the franchise and the representation were a great deal more satisfactory than they are at the present time.

If I may sum up briefly, it seems to me that there are two basic flaws in the political approach of Sir Edgar Whitehead and his party in Southern Rhodesia. Let me hasten to say that having been to Southern Rhodesia several times recently I give them full credit for the steps they are taking to eliminate racial discrimination, to raise living standards and to increase education. But the basic flaw is that they have no conception what they are up against, and of course, this is the strongest of all human emotions, that of nationalism.

Outside the Parliament building in Accra there is a statue of President Nkrumah the inscription on which is couched in Biblical language, which some people find affronting but it is the mode of address of many Africans. The inscription reads: Seek ye first the political kingdom and all things will be added unto you. That is what the Africans want. They want political advance, and it is hopelessly unreal to think that we can deal with this on the basis of increasing living standards, abolishing racial discrimination, and providing higher education.

If one could summarise the view of the U.F.P. in Southern Rhodesia, one might echo that line attributed to Dean Swift: We can't have Heaven crammed. Until we can relate and equate those two sentiments with each other I believe that we will never get anywhere near to solving the great problems in Southern Rhodesia.

Also, for heaven's sake, let the U.F.P. in Southern Rhodesia realise that they cannot choose nationalist leaders for the Africans. I remember that when I was in Northern Rhodesia a few months ago I was taken to meet an apparently representative, moderate African, a member of the U.F.P., a Member of Parliament and former Minister. He somewhat gloomily said to me, "We Africans will not be ready for self-government for 200 years", and I am sure that the House will understand why it was that I could not regard him as being a wholly contemporary figure. We cannot choose nationalist leaders for nationalist parties. The biggest error of all in their judgment is to assume that African nationalist parties are led by a few irresponsible, seditious agitators who if locked up will be replaced by someone very much nicer, more moderate and more sane. This is not the case. Our whole history of de-colonising proves this.

I was in considerable sympathy with my hon. Friend the Member for Merton and Morden (Mr. Atkins) who said that he would like to see a somewhat looser association between the territories than we have at present. I agree with that part of his speech, but he then went on to say that he hoped that we would not do anything to destroy prematurely what we have at present. In my judgment, accepting the former premise that it is a looser association which is required, it seems necessary to start from scratch because what we have to replace federation with is something organic, which will grow and will he acceptable to the constituent territories.

If we are to have an enduring association we have to devise an organisation which will combine the territories together and which is clearly the servant and not the master of the territorial governments. This is how the East African Common Services Organisation is working today. I believe that it is working well and I think that it could be an admirable example of co-operation which could be applied in Central Africa in the years to come.

8.28 p.m.

Mrs. Barbara Castle (Blackburn)

The hon. Member for Lancaster (Mr. Berkeley) has, as he always does on colonial affairs, made a very moderate and progressive speech. Of course, in doing so he has totally demolished the argument of his own Front Bench against our Motion and in favour of the Government Amendment. I only wish that the First Secretary of State could have been here to hear it all instead of just the closing words. The hon. Gentleman's speech was an excellent justification for the arguments which lie behind the Motion today, a Motion which the First Secretary of State scathingly described as depressing and unconstructive.

The hon. Member for Lancaster put his finger on the two principles which are at issue between us today. On the one hand, as he rightly pointed out, whether we like it or not, the Federation in its present form is rapidly dissolving before our eyes. Therefore, fair from our being negative in asking the Government to recognise this fact and start from that basis, we are doling what the hon. Member for Lancaster asks us to do, clearing away the irrelevancies in order to be able to proceed to a genuine organic and acceptable Federation in an entirely new form.

The second main principle in the Motion which the First Secretary found so unacceptable is our demand that the Government should immediately promote constitutional reforms in the three territories so that they may achieve early independence under representative democratic governments. What does the night hon. Gentleman object to in that statement of principle? What item does he find depressing and unconstructive? Does not he agree that we want the territories to have early independence? We have constantly pressed upon us from the other side of the House the claim of Southern Rhodesia for early independence. Does the right hon. Gentleman agree that independence should be given only where representative democratic Governments have been establislhed, or does he want to repeat the tragedy of South Africa in Southern Rhodesia?

If the First Secretary of State accepts bath those aims, the drive towards independence and the necessity for independence not to be granted until representative democratic Governments have been established in all the three territories, does he suggest that the present constitutional situation in the three territories produces, or looks like producing in the near future, that desirable situation? If he still thinks that, I can only repeat that I wish that he had heard the speech of the hon. Member for Lancaster.

The hon. Gentleman's speech was in marked contrast to many we have heard from the benches opposite today. The speech of the hon. Member for St. Albans (Mr. Goodhew) overwhelmingly gave us our case on this side for saying that federation in its present form cannot be saved. If the hon. Member for St. Albans is a star apologist for Sir Roy Welensky and Sir Edgar Whitehead, it is no wonder that their cause is doomed. Of course, we have had repeated today the accusation that, in putting down the Motion at this time, we were being irresponsible, that dangerous speeches were being made. It is not the words which are dangerous, it is the facts of the situation. Most dangerous of all is to ignore the logic of the facts and to refuse to act upon them.

It was a little surprising to hear the right hon. Member for Thirsk and Malton (Mr. Turton) quoting some recent words of Sir Hugh Foot in aid of his opposition to us. Those words of Sir Hugh Foot, which the right hon. Gentleman described as wise words, hinting at the great danger that Africa might be on the edge of a wave of violence, were the words of a man who had resigned in protest against the failure of the British Government to face the realities of the situation in Southern Rhodesia. They were simply a footnote to his gesture of protest at the Government's continued policy of drift. There was never a moment at which it was more important or urgent for the Government to state with clarity and courage the principles in which they believe.

We have heard these accusations often before. Throughout all the debates we have had during the long history of the Central African Federation, every time we have expressed alarm or condemned the principles being followed by those in charge of the Federation, we have been told that the moment was inopportune to make our criticisms, that our speeches were irresponsible and our words dangerous. I get a little tired when I hear people like the hon. Member for St. Albans lecturing us and saying that, if only we had been there and seen and heard things at first hand, we should take a different line.

I was in Southern Rhodesia five or six years ago. I was pilloried by every European, except a few liberals who, in any case, were afraid to speak out publicly. For what crime? For what irresponsibility? For what dangerous words? For criticising the Land Apportionment Act, which Sir Edgar Whitehead is now claiming the credit for having belatedly recognised as incompatible with the policy of partnership; or for protesting against the segregation of the races in public places.

I was told outright that I would be declared a prohibited immigrant for the crime of taking an African M.P. to dine in an exclusive European hotel. It is because we have pressed these points and criticisms that we have compelled the Europeans belatedly to come into line. Therefore, it is always opportune to press the next urgent stage of development, and the next stage of development which is extremely urgent now is that of constitutional practice of the principles which we profess.

This brings me to the First Secretary's achievements in Nyasaland. As the hon. Member for Lancaster said, we all rejoice that the Nyasaland constitutional talks have come to such a friendly and successful conclusion, but the hon. Member was also right when he said that this was the easiest stage of the journey. It is the beginning of the constitutional process and not the end. The implications of the agreement will be felt throughout the whole Federation, and will be felt very rapidly.

Some of us may have been surprised by the moderate scope of the agreement which has been reached with Dr. Hastings Banda. Those of us who know him and those of us who met him earlier in his career and who followed that career are well aware that he has had one determining guiding light the whole way—his unshakeable opposition to federation, a determination to take Nyasaland out of the Federation as soon as he was in a position to do so. Some of us tried to argue him into seeing things differently and to argue with his followers that they should not secede but should try to capture power inside the Federation and transform it from within. But we could not shake Dr. Banda on secession.

Knowing how committed he is to it, one must obviously recognise that he has not accepted these limited provisions for self-government which have been announced so far, and could not have accepted them, without coming to a private understanding with the First Secretary that very shortly he would be able to take the process a stage further by the announcement that Nyasaland was to be granted the right of secession from the Federation. We have a right to know from the First Secretary whether that promise has been given to Dr. Banda and how soon it is to be implemented. If it is not implemented soon, clearly we could have such a slipping back in Nyasaland from this mood of friendliness and co-operation which could be completely disastrous for the future cooperation for which we all hope.

If this is implicit in the Nyasaland agreement, even though the announcement may be delayed for a month or two, a number of consequences are implicit as well. Surely I am constitutionally correct when I say that once one of the three Territories secedes from the Federation, the Federation is thereby at any end, because the Federal Constitution is a constitutional agreement among three territories. One cannot just lop off one limb and say that the Federation will continue as before, but on two legs instead of three. The Federal Constitution will be dead and a new constitution will have to be negotiated. Even assuming that it were possible to continue with the Federation of merely Northern and Southern Rhodesia, that would still have to be done by an entirely new constitutional Act, which would have to be adopted and positively agreed in the House of Commons.

Nyasaland cannot just wriggle out of a side door, leaving things as they were for the rest. This is the end of federation. Can anybody imagine that in the light of what has just happened in Northern Rhodesia, even in the middle of elections weighted against the Africans in so many ways, Northern Rhodesian Africans will sit back quietly and allow this House to renegotiate a new Federation between Northern and Southern Rhodesia? Yet the First Secretary seemed to be hinting at that.

Sir Roy Welensky has said that he never wanted Nyasaland in. He told me scoffingly that she was the poor relation. He said, "We never wanted her in. We were told that we had to have this poor relation in." He wanted Northern Rhodesian copper, not the agricultural economy of Nyasaland. Of course, he desires nothing better than what the First Secretary has been hinting at, that this whole Federation should be put together again, like Humpty Dumpty, but with one of the parts missing, and with Southern Rhodesia having Northern Rhodesian revenues to use as it likes. But it is a very different thing if we have got to take positive constitutional action in this House to produce that situation.

It is because Sir Roy has seen this point that he is at this moment bitterly attacking the right of the British Government to reach unilaterally a decision about Nyasaland's right to secede. He is challenging our right to give Dr. Banda what he wants. He says, "You cannot do it without agreement with me", because he knows the Federation will come to pieces in his hands once that happens.

I therefore say to the First Secretary —and he ought to be more frank and open with the House—that he cannot keep faith with Dr. Banda and with Sir Roy Welensky at the same time. We have got to ask him to state categorically in this House that it is his word to Dr. Banda which will have the priority. It follows that once this process of breakup starts, then the whole Federation is in pieces. We ought to proceed on that basis now and take the consequential steps in the light of that situation.

It is quite intolerable to imagine that one can continue in Northern Rhodesia with this patchwork Constitution which will only be kept going in any form at all if Mr. Nkumbula and Mr. Kaunda can create and maintain their coalition. This is a factor of instability that has been deliberately created by the constitutional makeshifts of the First Secretary's predecessor who tried to "fiddle" democracy. The First Secretary knows quite well that the by-elections next week will produce another stalemate in the national seats. We cannot afford this situation of constitutional uncertainty and instability in Northern Rhodesia.

The First Secretary should tell us tonight that if there is stalemate next week we shall proceed at once to new constitutional talks which will produce a Government with democratic stability in Northern Rhodesia, one in which the African majority will be secured based on more democratic constitutional principles, and one which will then be able to face the crisis that will come in the heart of the Federation when Dr. Banda's secession with Nyasaland is announced.

I suggest to the First Secretary that this is the only way to solve the headache of Southern Rhodesia. Testimony has been paid to Sir Edgar Whitehead's belated conversion to more liberal attitudes. Of course, we all rejoice about this. We on this side welcome any move to repeal the Land Apportionment Act in Southern Rhodesia and to do away with the policies of racial segregation. I would be the first to welcome and applaud such a move in so far as it was genuine. But for heaven's sake let us realise that at the moment these are only verbal promises by Sir Edgar Whitehead and that pari passu he is carrying out some of the most repressive acts against civil liberties. Sir Edgar Whitehead will not be able to pursue liberal policies, even if he wants genuinely to do so, as long as he is exclusively responsible to a European electorate.

As the hon. Member for Lancaster said, we have entrenched European supremacy in Southern Rhodesia, and we are now hoist on a dilemma of our own making. We can, therefore, help Sir Edgar to achieve what he says he wants to achieve only by bringing pressure to bear from outside Southern Rhodesia on the European elements which are at the moment dragging their feet. Far from hindering him, this would help. If a pistol is held at his head by the British House of Commons, he has something to which he can turn to frighten some of his own European obscurantists out of the backwardness of their policy. The tougher the British Government are, the more they help the liberal elements in Southern Rhodesia.

As my right hon. Friend the Member for Wakefield (Mr. Creech Jones) said, Southern Rhodesia is the country which economically has benefited most from the Federation. If Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia secede, logically and almost automatically Southern Rhodesia faces an economic catastrophe unless she can persuade these two countries to enter into a new and looser form of economic association with her. But she would have to pay a political price for this, and that lies in a fundamental revolutionary change in her franchise and in her representative system in order to reflect African rights in the Southern Rhodesian Parliament.

In the interests of the Europeans of Southern Rhodesia I beg the First Secretary to make clear this evening certain dangerous facts—nothing could be more dangerous than to ignore their existence —in order to have the necessary consequential effects in Southern Rhodesia. Surely it is not too much to ask him to say categorically that one of the principles on which Her Majesty's Government proceed is that they will not give independence to any territory which does not have democratically elected and fully representative institutions controlling it. Is it too much to ask of a democratic British Government to proceed on such a principle? If we cannot say that, it is no wonder that we are pilloried and despised in the United Nations.

Secondly, the right hon. Gentleman should say that Her Majesty's Government will take the initiative in securing more democratic institutions in Southern Rhodesia by calling a constitutional conference in order to get rid of this mockery of a Constitution in Southern Rhodesia which is so inadequate that the Africans are turning their backs on it in contempt, thus once again revealing to the world out failure to carry out our democratic responsibilities in this area of Africa.

It would not do any harm, either, if the First Secretary, in winding-up the debate, were to hint a little more courageously than he did in his opening speech that there are residual powers which are still left to us in the Constitution of Southern Rhodesia, a hint that we still have power to suspend that Constitution if it were to be abused to the detriment of the civil liberties and democratic rights of the majority of the people of Southern Rhodesia. This is a moment for speed and courage, and I hope that before the debate concludes the First Secretary will redress some of the terrifying inadequacies of his opening speech.

8.51 p.m.

Mr. Henry Clark (Antrim, North)

We are having one more of our debates on Central Africa. Ever since I came into this House, and probably for a long time before that, we have had debates in which many people have got up and said the same things again and again. I had hoped, when we started this debate, that there would have been rather a change and that we could really feel that we had moved forward. I think there is between the two parties common ground, on which we could move forward. It was rather depressing, I thought, that we had a number of speeches which echoed the same old stories which we have all heard since 1950 in one form or another. However, there is some common ground, and I think we want to recognise it, and that on the whole my right hon. Friend the First Secretary gave us a lead.

I am one of those people who, from the very start, and long before I entered this House, viewed federation with very considerable doubt. I have always been rather doubtful whether these principles which sound so very wise and sound were really being put into practice. Frankly, I often wondered if they could be put into practice, given the very best possible will in the world and the greatest energy in reform. But we have still got this Federation, and I think all of us are agreed that it needs most drastic reform.

Quite frankly, I cannot see federation surviving. Unfortunately, I am sorry to say, I cannot see federation surviving in any form at all so long as Sir Roy Welensky remains its head. Sir Roy Welensky is a man of very broad hopes and holds out a tremendous plan of the most flowing sort, but, unfortunately, he has been completely identified with one type of federation, and an unfortunate type of federation, and I cannot see that Federation remaining. We all agree that we need a change, and on the whole I think there is a considerable degree of agreement that something should remain out of federation.

I think most of us agree that if federation goes there should remain some economic link, something like the East African High Commission, the East African Common Services agreement—that something should remain; but, quite clearly, as one hon. Member put it, if we close one door, and if people must go out one door, we must have the other door open for them to come in, so that, if there is a drastic change and federation ceases, there is something set up instead, some much looser economic link between the three territories.

It would be a fairly difficult business. There was talk, hopeful, rather grandiose talk, some two years ago of East Africa not only becoming a federation but becoming almost one integrated country. We made mistakes in the timing. Tanganyika dashed forward to independence—I think it is possibly agreed by many, rather too quickly. Kenya has had to lag behind. Thank goodness, Kenya is one of the African countries which is not in an appalling hurry. Uganda has got her independence. They got it at different times. One begins to wonder whether Tanganyika and Uganda, having smelt the pleasure of complete independence, will be a wee bit chary of changing from bachelorhood to marriage with two wives, par- ticularly if one is as awkward as Kenya can be at times.

We may make a mistake in timing in the change-over of the Federation, as I think we made a mistake—a difficult one to avoid—in East Africa, and I do not want to raise any party issues, but I think that hon. Gentlemen opposite—

Mr. Charles Loughlin (Gloucestershire, West)

Democratic Northern Ireland.

Mr. H. Clark

I know that hon. Gentlemen opposite never make speeches without trying to raise all the party issues they can, but I do not think that some hon. Gentlemen opposite have been fair in asking for replies to specific questions, remembering that the First Secretary is in the most ticklish position of trying to organise the change-over from today's Federation, detested by millions of Africans, to something new, which is a matter of timing and requires great care, and will depend on the lowering of temperature which my right hon. Friend has been so successful in bringing about in Central Africa.

If my right hon. Friend answers the questions which have been asked, I think that he will inhibit himself. I think that he should have the greatest possible freedom of movement so that out of the Federation, which must go, we can got some other form of union which can keep these territories together economically, and, let us hope, make them more economically prosperous in the years ahead.

I think that Southern Rhodesia presents one of the most difficult problems facing us, because, as I have said more than once in this House, whether we like it or not Southern Rhodesia is a very different country from Northern Rhodesia or Nyasaland or any of the countries to the north of it.

The impact of the European and of European culture has been far deeper and more widespread in Southern Rhodesia than in either of the other two territories of the Federation. There is argument about the situation in the other territories, but in Southern Rhodesia there is a group which is described alternatively as African middle-class, the moderate African, the people who want the status quo to remain, or possibly people who want evolution rather that revolution. The stories are exaggerated on both sides, but there undoubtedly is in Southern Rhodesia a considerable body of people who do not want militant African nationalism in the form that has been seen further north. This group does not honestly exist to any great extent in Nyasaland or Northern Rhodesia.

There is another factor here which is becoming more and more apparent all over Africa. Southern Rhodesia has a much more sophisticated economy than that either of Nyasaland or Northern Rhodesia. We can take the simile of East Africa. It was easy enough to give Tanganyika independence, because she has an extremely simple and straightforward primary producing economy, but to give Kenya independence and to find a suitable formula for her constitution is peculiarly difficult because she has a more sophisticated economy. It was possible to hand over Tanganyika to rather inexperienced politicians. They may make mistakes, but those mistakes will not have too far-reaching results. The more complicated the economy, the further those mistakes will go. Here again, Southern Rhodesia is basically different from the other territories, and I think that this is the reason why we can afford to deal with Southern Rhodesia very differently from the other two territories

It has been said many times that the arguments we have across the Floor of the House are largely on matters of timing. Some people believe that we should go fast, and others that we should go slow. I do not think that anybody would disagree that we can sometimes go too fast, and that we also go too slow. I am not certain that there can be any argument that the same rate of progress is exactly right for every territory. A great deal is to be said for a slower rate of advance towards "one man, one vote" in Southern Rhodesia than in the other countries.

Mr. G. Thomas

What does the hon. Member think that the Africans feel about that philosophy?

Mr. Clark

I have never met an African who particularly wanted the principle of "one man, one vote". I have met thousands who wanted their own leaders, but the glamour of the ballot box has been lost on virtually all the Africans that I have met.

I think that we can go slower in Southern Rhodesia with justification. Much of this is tied up in the character of Sir Edgar Whitehead. He is often classified with other rather reactionary rulers, but at least if he is not one of the world's greatest Liberals, in the terms of southern African politics he is an outstanding Liberal. We must give him every credit for the work that he has done. It is easy enough to say that he should have done more. Anybody who has met the more reactionary European Rhodesians, and who has visited the country, as I have—particularly after the hon. Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle) and some of her colleagues have tried to flout the laws—realises what a difficult job Sir Edgar has had.

If he were carrying out his policy 500 miles further south, in Pretoria, everybody here would applaud him as a considerable Liberal. When we make remarks about the policy of the South African Republic we must remember that we are paying a compliment to Sir Edgar Whitehead, because Southern Rhodesia is more akin to South Africa than to the countries to its north. If Sir Edgar can carry through a policy which is extremely liberal judged by the standards of the South Africans, we must give him credit for it.

I believe that his foroeast may be proved correct, and that we shall probably have an African majority in Southern Rhodesia long before the 15 years that is so often talked about. I believe that the European population in Southern Rhodesia will change the franchise as time goes on. It is all very well for my hon. Friend the Member for Lancaster (Mr. Berkeley) to accuse the Government of not having made a fair bargain. I have never heard of a bargain that could not have been made better a few minutes after it was concluded. It is all very well to suggest that we should have put strings on the loan to Southern Rhodesia in July, but does my hon. Friend think that if we had done so it would have strengthened Sir Edgar Whitehead's position art the forthcoming elections? It is all very well talking about the shortcomings of Southern Rhodesia's policy, but under the present Constitution the people who are breathing down Sir Edgar's neck are to the Right of him and not to his Left.

If this policy is carried out in Southern Rhodesia we may achieve the result that we have talked of so often, looked for for so long, and hoped far so much in the Federation. We have talked about racial partnership, and about working together. Given the time, and given the much larger European population and the much smaller African population, we may succeed in getting racial partnership, and the small group of moderate Africans who want the status quo to evolve slowly, rather than go into revolution, may well increase in size.

I do not think there is any question but that Southern Rhodesia has not been blessed with the happiest of African political parties. There is no question but that Mr. Nkomo and his lads are a pretty doubtful lot of politicians—and I have met a fair number, and call many of them my friends. But any African political party which can, as an article of faith, say, "Our aim is to destroy the economy of Southern Rhodesia", and which proclaims that publicly to such an extent that the trade unions start saying, "But where are our chaps going to work?", has little to recommend it.

One has only to ask oneself how much more fortunate the position would be now if Mr. Nkomo had honoured his original agreement to accept the present Constitution, if 30,000–40,000 Africans were registered on the polls and if there were the possibility of Mr. Nkomo's party taking all 15 of the possible African seats. It would be very much more difficult to criticise Southern Rhodesia then. But the faults which led to the present position rather than to that which I have outlined have been the faults not of Sir Edgar Whitehead and the Government but of those nationalists who are meant to be leading their people on the best and quickest way to self-government and to African dignity.

I believe that on the whole Southern Rhodesia has been very badly failed by her African politicians and that if he is given our backing, Sir Edgar Whitehead may well be able to lead the country through these difficulties; and that we may in Southern Rhodesia achieve those results which we always hoped that the whole Federation would bring to us.

9.8 p.m.

Sir Frank Soskice (Newport)

The Motion, which I support, falls into three parts. It criticises the Government's policy in general, it calls upon the Government to accept that the existing Federation must go and it urges the promotion of constitutional reform in the three territories to help them on their way to independence under responsible democratic government.

In winding up the debate from this side of the House it is my purpose to resume the basic grounds of our criticism and the steps which we think that the Government ought to take. I hope that hon. Members opposite will not think that because we are critical of Government policy we are, therefore, necessarily attacking, or hostile to, the white population, whether in Southern Rhodesia or elsewhere. On the contrary our concern is to try to promote the outlines of a settlement in which all races can live together in security and in growing prosperity in an atmosphere of mutual understanding and esteem.

It is, however, our duty to the House and to the very nature of the problem itself to speak frankly when we think that criticism is necessary. Some hon. Members have said that our proposals are irresponsible, but I do not find it easy to understand why it is irresponsible for us to advocate now, in 1962, at any rate in the case of Northern Rhodesia, exactly that which the Monckton Commission advocated in October, 1960, over two years ago.

Some hon. Members opposite have called for a bipartisan approach. Such an approach is both easy and useful, subject to the condition that both sides of the House agree. But, as the hon. Member for Devon, North (Mr. Thorpe) pointed out in his very forceful speech, the issues on Central Africa are and have long been the subject of acute disagreement between the two sides of the House. We have consistently, from the outset, opposed federation. Hon. Members opposite have as consistently supported it. The true position is that the logic and progress of events have gradually brought round hon. Members opposite—at any rate a considerable number of them—to realise that in opposing the imposition of federation at the outset, against the will of the African people, we were right, and that they were wrong in disregarding African aspirations.

What is the problem? We have to deal with three Territories with a population of about 8 million Africans and 300,000 Europeans. In Southern Rhodesia there are 275,000 Europeans —that is, one to 13 Africans. In Northern Rhodesia, there are 77,000 Europeans—that is one to 30 Africans. In Nyasaland, there are 9,500 Europeans —that is, one to 300 Africans. In those circumstances, any attempt at a longterm settlement in any of the three territories which did not provide that Africans should in the legislative organs of those territories be represented by a majority of seats, or at the very least, and then for only a transitional period, by parity, is absolutely and finally foredoomed to failure. Whatever economic advantages federation has brought—and it has brought economic advantages—unless politically acceptable solutions can be achieved, no permanent stability is possible.

New streams of thought and aspirations let loose by the upheaval of the Second World War, by the concept of equality embodied in the Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations, by the progressive and rapid advancement to independence of one after another of the peoples of the African continent, have made it inevitable that no policy in the Federation territories could succeed which did not convince moderate African opinion that it would bring orderly advance to real representative government.

That does not necessarily mean the immediate achievement of a franchise based directly on "one-man, one-vote," but it does involve that it should be apparent to Africans that disorder and violence are not the only means of wining a franchise broadly fair according to numbers as between the European population and the African. It also means that social and political development which in other circumstances and at other times might have spread over fifteen to twenty years in face of the urgent and insistent demands of the peoples of Africa—never so politically conscious as today—have inevitably to be telescoped into perhaps two, three or four years at the most.

As we have repeatedly said from this side of the House, our charge against the Government is that, at any rate in the case of two of the three territories, Southern and Northern Rhodesia, they have failed to pay adequate regard to these basic principles. In the case of Nyasaland, we are glad to pay our tribute, which should go not only to the right hon. Gentleman but also to Dr. Banda and his Malawi supporters, for the happy issue of the Nyasaland Constitutional Conference as outlined in the White Paper just issued. Nyasaland is to enjoy full self-government in February, 1963, but there still remain the question of independence and the right of Nyasaland to secede from the Federation.

Many of us had hoped that the right hon. Gentleman would be able to make a somewhat more specific announcement in this topic, the question of secession, this afternoon. He has not yet been able to do so, but he has still to address the House again. I again remind him, as he has been reminded in the debate, that when the General Election took place in August, 1961, under the Nyasaland Constitution which emerged as a result of the conference in London in July of the previous year—a Constitution, be it remembered, with a restricted franchise giving the vote to only 100,000 Africans out of nearly 3 million—Dr. Banda's party obtained 95 per cent. of the votes out of 99 per cent. of the electorate who voted, on an anti-Federation programme.

Dr. Banda himself, immediately after the Election, described the result as a direct mandate to secede from the Federation as soon as possible. I think that I am right in saying that the right hon. Gentleman is on record—I refer to the occasion of his last visit to Nyasaland in May, 1962—as having recognised publicly that it was indeed the desire of the people of Nyasaland to secede. Even Sir Roy Welensky has indicated that he would not object to the secession of Nyasaland from the Federation so long as this did not imply the right of Northern Rhodesia to secede.

I therefore press on the right hon. Gentleman that he should not long delay acceptance in principle of the right of Nyasaland to secede and that he should give an indication of his acceptance, if possible, before the end of the year, or as soon as he can in the new year and, having given his indication of acceptance in principle of that right, he should without dolly thereafter introduce necessary legislation to bring secession about.

Turning to a cognate topic, I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will firmly resist Sir Roy Welensky's claim, to which my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle) referred, a claim which, I understand, is that the British Government could not amend the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland Act, 1953, so as to permit of the secession of any of the three territories except with the consent of the Governments of the Federation and of the other territories.

The right hon. and learned Member for Chertsey (Sir L. Heald), in the debate on the Address in reply to the Queen's Speech on 3rd November, 1960, completely demolished any such claim. In this debate I do not seek to repeat the argument he used. As he pointed out, Her Majesty's Government have an unfettered right to amend this Act by permitting Nyasaland, or either of the other three territories, to secede. Naturally consultation with the Governments would be appropriate, but any claim by Sir Roy Welensky in effect himself to have the last say on a question of secession—because that is what it comes to—as the right hon. and learned Member showed, is devoid of any foundation whatever either in law or in any other way.

In the case of Southern Rhodesia and Northern Rhodesia we charge that the Government have been guilty of grave errors of judgment. The basic error in the case of Southern Rhodesia was the surrender by the Government of their reserve powers under the 1923 Constitution In return for the 1961 Constitution. The franchise provided for in the 1961 Constitution could not possibly have been expected to satisfy legitimate African expectation's. It has worked out even worse than was hoped. There was to be an A roll, in effect the previously existing highly restricted common roll, and a B roll, designed to enfranchise a number of African voters and result in the return of 15 African members in a newly constituted Legislature of 65 members.

Sir Edgar Whitehead stated that he hoped that the B roll would enfranchise about 60,000 voters—that is, 60,000 out of an African population of nearly 3 million. In fact, about 12,000 African voters are on the register. It thus left the African population almost completely disfranchised. Instead of the vote, the Constitution contained a Declaration of Rights, including a provision against discriminatory laws, and set up a Constitutional Council in effect to see that the provision was enforced.

It is not the purpose of our Motion simply to stigmatise the Government for what we regard as their past errors. Therefore, I do not intend to rehearse the manifold defects of these provisions. They were examined in detail when the House debated the new Constitution in June of last year. The antidiscrimination provisions, however, admitted of such gaping wide exceptions as to be almost meaningless and the powers of the Constitutional Council were so hedged about as to be of little significance. Anyhow, Africans could hardly be expected to have much confidence in this type of constitutional device after the present Foreign Secretary, then Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations, elected in 1957 to disregard a recommendation of the African Affairs Board set up under the Constitution of the Federation to safeguard African interests.

To take just one example, to show how ineffective the Declaration of Rights was, in October 1960, before the Constitution was promulgated, the Law and Order Maintenance Act had been passed, which had resulted in the resignation of the Chief Justice, Sir Robert Tredgold, because he was so shocked at its repressive provisions. It is appropriate to remind 'the House again of what he said about !that Act on 1st November, 1960, on the occasion of his resignation. His words were that it outraged almost every basic human right and is an unwarranted invasion by the Executive of the sphere of the courts. In August of this year the Government of Southern Rhodesia actually strengthened those provisions by amendments that again called forth from Sir Robert Tredgold a public description of them as provisions more appropriate to a police State. Yet this Act and the amendments to it in no way infringed against the Declaration of the Rights in the Constitution which was designed to protect the Africans.

The dismay and disorder amongst Africans and the repressive measures taken against them have frequently been discussed and have again been referred to by many speakers in the course of this debate. Of course, there have been acts of intimidation by Africans which we on this side of the House deplored just as much as hon. Members opposite, but the fact is that the Government and the leaders of organised African opinion are virtually out of touch and a deadlock has been reached.

Contact to the extent that it ever existed between them has been broken. Sir Edgar Whitehead has undoubtedly taken steps to liberalise existing legislation. For example, he has undertaken to repeal the Land Apportionment Act and he has also taken radical measures to end humiliating discrimination in places of public resort. In this, I think that from this side of the House we would freely acknowledge that he has shown both courage and determination. But so estranged is African opinion that no palliative measures by Sir Edgar Whitehead's Government could obliterate the bitterness in their minds because they remained virtually disfranchised and in place of the vote have been granted by the Constitution safeguards which are of comparatively little value.

It is against this background that we, by our Motion, criticise the Government for their failure to revise these policies. In terms of the pace of change in Africa, the formulating of the Constitution is now part of the limbo of time long since passed, but what we complain of is that Ministers have done little since and are doing too little now to attempt to redress the situation in Southern Rhodesia. They do not, as I read their speeches, and as I understood the right hon. Gentleman today, make any serious attempt to defend a condition of affairs in which, in face of the changes in Nigeria, Sierre Leone, Tanganyika, Ghana and many other African countries, Southern Rhodesia remains one of the few in which virtually the whole of the African population still remains disfranchised.

Their defence, as I understand it, is that this is a matter for Southern Rhodesia and that Her Majesty's Government are virtually powerless to influence any change. This is surely abdicating a responsibility which rests fairly and squarely on the shoulders of the right hon. Gentleman. It may well be that the reserve powers had not been used since 1923. Nevertheless, it is not a mere lawyer's quibble to say that Southern Rhodesia has never in law or in substance attained the status of an independent colonial country within the Statute of Westminster. There has always been a clearly recognised distinction in status between Southern Rhodesia and a country such as Canada.

If there were not in substance such a distinction, why did Sir Edgar Whitehead, in April, 1960, think it necessary to come to London for talks with Lord Home, the then Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations, in order to persuade the British Government to remove the remaining reserve powers from the Southern Rhodesian Constitution? What was the point of Mr. Molianga, deputy president in Southern Rhodesia of the main African political party, the National Democratic Party, also coming to London to protest at the proposed change?

More significant still, why, on May 9th, 1960, in the House of Commons, did Lord Alport, then Minister of State for Commonwealth Relations, declare that Britain's willingness to withdraw her reserve powers from Southern Rhodesia …would depend on whether arrangements could be devised and agreed by both Governments which would provide effective alternative safeguards, particularly in respect of discriminatory legislation and land rights, and in respect of amendment of the Constitution."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 9th May, 1960; Vol. 623, c. 31.] In what capacity did the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations preside over the conference in Salisbury in June, 1961, at which the main proposals for the new Constitution were agreed? If the United Kingdom had nothing of significance to surrender why should Sir Edgar Whitehead have so involved us at all? A courtesy intimation that he was proposing to introduce a new Constitution would have been more appropriate. The truth, surely, is that it was recognised that we were giving up important nights, and were virtually involved in the Constitution that was to take their place.

Moreover, even if those rights might have been regarded in pre-war years as being to some extent obsolescent, the rapid tempo of post-war change in Africa had radically changed the situation. After all, the 1950s provided a constant series of exchanges between the United Kingdom Government and the Governments of the territories, and those exchanges could not possibly have had any meaning unless on the footing that our responsibility was engaged in the development of Southern Rhodesia just as much as in the case of Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland.

In fact, it is not even as though we had forgone our reserve rights when the Constitution was in preparation in 1961. We only surrendered them within a few days from now when, under the Constitution, the old Assembly was dissolved to make way for the election to the New Assembly which, I believe, is to take place on the 14th of this month.

No doubt the United Kingdom Parliament, as a matter of law—and, again, this is not a lawyer's quibble—has unfettered power to amend the Southern Rhodesia Constitution Act of 1961 in the last resort by making any changes, including the resumption of the reserve powers if it thinks fit, or even by suspending the Constitution—although I quite accept that no such drastic action would he appropriate without very adequate cause.

Reference has been made to the financial situation. It has been pointed out in this debate that as late as this summer a loan of about £3½ million was made available to the Government of Southern Rhodesia, and some financial dependence on this country is, in any event, likely to continue over the coming years.

In any event, looking at the broad canvas, it must be quite unrealistic to think that it would mean nothing to the people of Rhodesia, coloured and white, to repudiate the influence of this country, and all connection with it, and all that that means—perhaps, as is sometimes suggested, by joining up with South Africa if, indeed—and this, too, has been said—South Africa would be willing to unite with a territory that would be bound to bring with it a large contingent of voters of British origin.

If responsibility rests solely with Southern Rhodesia and the British Government have no involvement at all, how did it come about that Sir Edgar Whitehead was co-opted as a member of the British team at the United Nations to put the British case on Southern Rhodesia, in place of Sir Hugh Foot, who had resigned in protest at the nature of that very case? Surely, it was a serious mistake to invite Sir Edgar Whitehead to advocate, at least under British auspices, a policy for which the British Government apparently now disclaim any responsibility.

I put it to the right hon. Gentleman that it would be a very serious confession if the United Kingdom Government had to avow that they had parted with reserve powers, and thus left themselves completely powerless to exert influence in a changing situation in Southern Rhodesia in which it might be vitally necessary for the British Government to intervene by the exercise of their influence.

On this issue I think that we would acquit the Government of having to make any such avowal. On the contrary, we put it to the Government, and particularly to the First Secretary, that the Government are still in a position to exercise great and abiding and continuing influence over the proceedings of the Southern Rhodesia Government. But what we urge is that the Government should not assert their own powerlessness to bring pressure on the Southern Rhodesia Government to take what we believe is an essential step.

This is drastically to revise the present franchise arrangements so as to provide by reasonable stages, if necessary, for representation for Africans in the Southern Rhodesian Legislature broadly commensurate with the vastly preponderating numbers of the African population in comparison with the European. For example, the Government, as has been pointed out, could make it clear that there could be no question of further advance by Southern Rhodesia towards becoming an independent Commonwealth country, whether within or outside the framework of the Federation, until the franchise was drastically revised.

It is, of course, not easy to make changes with African feeling in its present state of exasperation. But our case is that it should never have been allowed to get into this state. Conditions will get worse, not improve, until it is clear that either the Southern Rhodesian or the British Government are taking the initiative. This is in the interest not only of the Africans themselves but also of the Europeans amongst whom many believe in progressive liberalisation as the answer, culminating inevitably at some time in an African majority broadly representing the division between Africans and Europeans amongst the population. It is this which will make possible the achievement of the very reforms which Sir Edgar Whitehead is trying to achieve and which otherwise must rest stillborn in a continuing deteriorating situation.

In Northern Rhodesia the position is in a sense more simple and also in a sense more complex. It is more complex because of the recent involvement of President Tshombe with Mr. Kaunda and Mr. Nkumbula. It is more simple because, with an African population of 30 to one European, as long ago as October. 1960, the Monckton Commission recommended that the franchise should be extended so as to enable a greatly preponderating African population to obtain a majority of the seats in the Northern Rhodesia Legislature. Here again, in our view, the present strains and difficulties are directly traceable very largely to what we think were the serious errors of judgment of the present Leader of the House and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when they were respectively Secretary of State for the Colonies, in defiance of this recommendation of the Monckton Commission.

As time is limited, I do not want to seek to detail what I think the hon. Member for Devon, North has described as editions No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 of the franchise. I forget the exact terms he used, but they were very effective. The whole story was a somewhat unedifying tug-of-war over the souls of two irresolute Colonial Secretaries, ending in a stalemate. Here, in our opinion. Government policy in the case of Northern Rhodesia was as greatly at fault as it was in the case of Southern Rhodesia in relation to the Constitution.

I want to refer to what the First Secretary has said about the pending elections. I can understand what his point of view is about that, but I would remind him that in the elections which have taken place the United Independent Party, together with the African National Congress, in Northern Rhodesia has won no less than 80 per cent. of the votes with an anti-federation programme.

We understand that the First Secretary proposes to visit the Federation next month. We urge upon him that he should take the opportunity to call meetings with a view to reforming the Constitution so as to give African representation in terms of seats in the Assembly corresponding broadly to the numbers of the African population. He should recognise that the great majority of the population wish for secession from the Federation. It is, surely, in the long run, quite impossible to stand in the way of recognising the right of secession.

I conclude by saying—

Hon. Members

Hear, hear.

Mr. George Brown (Belper)

The First Secretary of State did not want any more time.

Sir F. Soskice

I do not want to take up too much of the time of the House. I should have given the right hon. Gentleman more than twenty minutes if I had not understood that that was what he required. I understood that, if anything, he wanted less than twenty minutes. I can only hope that the House will not make a mistake in allowing the right hon. Gentleman to speak twice and that we shall have more than a purely perfunctory reply.

What we hope for after the termination of the Federation is that economic links will be built up by independent Governments in the three territories which will preserve the economic prosperity which it was originally hoped would come out of the Federation.

I have left the right hon. Gentleman twenty minutes. I hope that he will use the time to answer some of the questions which we have put to him. I have given the reasons why we put the Motion down, not in any desire to aggravate a difficult situation—we recognise that it is difficult—but because we wish to press upon the Government policies which, we firmly and sincerely believe, are the only ones which can bring any hope of stability in the extremely fevered situation of the territories of Central Africa.

9.42 p.m.

Mr. R. A. Butler

I shall reply to the hon. Member for Leeds, East (Mr. Healey), the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Mr. D. Foot) and the right hon. and learned Member for Newport (Sir F. Soskice) during the course of my remarks. We have had an interesting and valuable debate. My right hon. Friend the Member for Thirsk and Malton (Mr. Turton), quoting the Monckton Report, referred to the great experiment of the Federation. It has been a great experiment and, before I conclude, I shall describe how I hope that we can carry forward the best results which have come from the past combined with the aspirations of the future.

In this connection, I refer to the speeches of the hon. Member for Devon, North (Mr. Thorpe) and the right hon. Member fol. Wakefield (Mr. Creech Jones), who has great experience of these matters, who both said that, if there is to be a new association, it must be seen that the present one has gone. I quite understand their point of view because I have had it put to me by many people. I say at the outset of my reply that I value any suggestion of that sort to indicate that people have constructive ideas about association for the future.

My hon. Friend the Member for Farnham (Sir G. Nicholson) said that we should have a degree of optimism. I think that we should. I do not say that things will be easy. As I said earlier today, this is the most difficult problem I have had to deal with in all my political life. It seems intractable. There are people who absolutely fundamentally differ from each other in Central Africa. There are those who fundamentally differ from one another in this House, as the debate today has shown. But I believe that, as my hon. Friend the Member for Farnham said, we can make out of the situation a constructive solution. I looked to this debate not for the inflammatory speeches, to use the words of the hon. Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason), but for the constructive speeches which have been made. I include among those the speech of the right hon. and learned Member for Newport, which certainly was not inflammatory and which was very carefully worked out.

My hon. Friend the Member for St. Albans (Mr. Goodhew) referred to this being a bad time for debate, and with that I absolutely agree. What we have said in our Amendment is true—that it is impossible to come to solutions when two elections are pending, one within seven days and one within less than a fortnight. It is, therefore, very difficult for me to answer with final results until I see the shape and nature of the new governments which will emerge as a result of these elections.

Mr. Healey rose

Mr. Butler

I gave the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Newport the time he wanted and as I have already spoken and as I am speaking now only by leave of the House, I want to answer points shortly and to the point.

My hon. Friend the Member for Antrim, North (Mr. H. Clark) said that he would be sorry if my decisions were inhibited as a result of the debate, and that is one of the difficulties that I am in. I do not want to come to decisions before the elections take place, or before we see what the new governments are.

I have found that this debate has shown a greater desire for a constructive solution than the Opposition Motion would give us to believe. The difficulty has also been seen by many of the speakers in the debate—that we should reach conclusions on general problems before the election results are in. I want to make it quite clear to those who are fighting these elections, in either Northern Rhodesia or Southern Rhodesia, that, though we have made comments in the House, there is no intention on either side that we should have taken part in the elections, or tried to influence them.

I agree with what has been said in the debate—that the time will come for constructive statements, and I shall certainly keep the House informed directly I get the opportunity to do so after the elections are concluded and the governments formed. The right hon. and learned Gentleman referred to the pos-sibility of a visit by myself. I should like to make the decision about this if necessary and communicate it to the House directly we have seen the results of the elections and can gauge the situation. It may well be extremely valuable and would follow up the constructive suggestions made in the debate and enable me to form my own personal opinion.

The hon. Member for Leeds, East asked me a number of questions which I shall attempt to answer shortly and to the point. He suggested that the Governor should be instructed to form an interim administration in Northern Rhodesia. That raises precisely the difficulty and is exactly what I am unable to do. It is impossible before the election is finished to ask the Governor to form any administration other than that which he has formed, namely, a caretaker government. Directly the election is over and the Governor sees the results, whatever they may be, if the elections are still thwarted, under the Constitution he will have to act in the situation as he finds it, and he will be able to exercise his constitutional duty to form a new government and I am sure that we shall all be glad to see one, whatever it is.

Mr. Healey

Would the right hon. Gentleman answer my question? If the Governor finds himself in the situation —as everybody on both sides of the House seems to expect that he will—will he call upon a new government to be formed which reflects the will of the people as reflected at the ballot box?

Mr. Butler

That is the constitutional duty of any constitutional monarch and the Governor, acting as such on this occasion, will have to act on those principles. I cannot prejudge his decision because it is a matter for him, but I see no reason why anybody acting constitutionally should not act on constitutional principles.

The hon. Member also referred to whether we could have a new constitution and constitutional talks for it. Again I am in the same difficulty. This was a matter which was raised by the hon. and learned Member for Ipswich, and I have a note of his remarks with me. It is quite impossible for me to consider or even decide to have conversations on a new constitution before the present Constitution is even working; and it is essential to give the present Constitution a chance of working. I hope those who criticise the present Constitution in Northern Rhodesia will appreciate, as I believe they will, the opportunity of working the present Constitution and gaining experience from it so that we may then take decisions about the future.

The hon. and learned Gentleman asked me a question about Barotseland. What we have to bear in mind there is the special relationship of Barotseland with the Crown, and I can simply say at this stage that we shall undertake no solution to Barotseland that is inimical to its people, that is not acceptable to its people, and we shall have to investigate this further in the course of our discussions. The hon. and learned Gentleman asked me if we had any plans for dividing up or partitioning Northern Rhodesia. Again, I say that we shall adopt no solution in Northern Rhodesia which is not acceptable to its people. The hon. and learned Gentleman's last question was about the African leaders who now had a mandate against federation. Again, this is a matter which I must leave until after I see what new Government is formed in both Southern and Northern Rhodesia, and then I can carry forward with constructive plans for the best future that we can create.

The right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Newport and the hon. Member for Leeds, East raised two difficult and important questions in relation to Southern Rhodesia. One was whether we should suspend the Constitution and the other was that we should withhold independence except on certain terms. I say quite categorically that we have no intention of suspending the Southern Rhodesian Constitution. The right hon. and learned Gentleman said that would be a drastic action. He is perfectly correct—his remarks were helpful in this connection—and we have no intention of doing so.

As to withholding independence, all I can say is this. Southern Rhodesia is part of the Federation. No question of granting independence, therefore, arises in present circumstances. There are no proposals for granting independence to Southern Rhodesia and, therefore, we must regard this question as entirely hypothetical.

The right hon. and learned Gentleman and the hon. Gentleman then raised the question of the loan which was granted to Southern Rhodesia. I should like to say quite definitely that I have no regrets whatever about granting this loan. It was granted almost entirely to help African development, particularly education, the development of African agriculture, housing, and other matters. If the hon. Gentleman had my responsibility and realised at the time the anxiety we had about the political situation in Southern Rhodesia, he would, I think, look more kindly on granting a loan to stop some of the worst types of unemployment and economic difficulty in Southern Rhodesia which would, I think, have come very badly on top of the political situation there. The Government, therefore, deliberately granted this loan. We shall look at every future possibility with great care. I do not know if we shall have the money to grant any more. I shall have to get it from my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer. All I know is that I do not regret this loan having been granted with the generosity of Her Majesty's Government.

My right hon. Friend the Member for Thirsk and Malton asked whether our representatives at the United Nations could have experience of Central Africa. My answer is that we are trying to arrange this, and that we realise the importance of the case being put with the utmost knowledge of Southern Rhodesia itself.

The right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Newport raised the question of why Sir Edgar Whitehead went to the United Nations. I explained in my opening speech that Her Majesty's Government have a residual responsibility for the foreign affairs of Southern Rhodesia. There was no method of Sir Edgar Whitehead speaking unless he spoke from the British place. All I can say is that his speech had a profound effect upon the members of the United Nations and that, as I quoted him, it gave an example of non-racial, non-discriminatory policy which the Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia wishes himself to carry out.

The right hon. and learned Gentleman referred to some of the weaknesses of the Southern Rhodesian Constitution. I have read his previous speech when the Constitution was discussed. We cannot now alter the position of the Constitutional Council, and I believe that the Bill of Rights will operate very much better than he believes. He asked why the reserve powers were abandoned. We believe the new powers under the Constitutional Council and the Bill of Rights will be just as effective, indeed more effective, than powers which were never used. There has been a great deal of talk about these reserve powers which we have had since 1923, but they were never called into operation. We think that the new Constitution, with its powers embedded in it, will be a very much more effective constitution than one with powers which the British Government never use.

I come to the other question asked me by the hon. Gentleman which I will deal with in conjunction with Nyasaland, namely, whether the British Government have the legal power to legislate on the matter of secession. The hon. Member for Barnsley raised the whole question of Nyasaland. He asked whether we had studied all the economic effects of secession. The answer is, certainly. I appointed my advisers and they have brought me back a full report. One of the most comforting features of this report is the agreement by the Malawi Ministers to undertake measures in the event of their parting from the Federation to put right some of the economic imbalance which will occur at the time of secession. I have received from Dr. Banda and the late lamented Mr. Chisiza a full plan not only for impositions of taxation which would make hon. Members of this House squirm if they had to impose them—[An HON. MEMBER: "On which side?"]—on both sides; all human beings in Parliament dislike the imposition of taxation—but also proposals for raising new money, and I believe that these proposals are realistic. It is impossible to exaggerate the strong feeling of Malawi Ministers on this subject.

The hon. Member for Barnsley said that he foresaw some severance in the relations between Nyasaland and the Federation. He said that the did not want to see an unnecessary economic break. There is a general view in the House which has been expressed today that there may well have to be new forms of association. If so, we shall have to consider this. The right hon. and learned Member for Newport said that he would like rue at a conveniently early date to make a decision on this matter. That is quite reasonable, but I cannot give a decision tonight. I realise the full seriousness of the decision. I wanted to listen to the debate, and I had listened to the debate. I realise the importance of the issues as put to me by hon. Members on both sides of the House.

The right hon. and learned Member for Newport asked Whether we have the legal power to legislate for the secession of a territory from the Federation. He quoted my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Chertsey (Sir L. Heald) on this subject. I should like to draw attention to the views of the last Lord Chancellor, Lord Kilmuir, on it in another place. The matter has been canvassed and it is clear, in my opinion, that we have the right to legislate on this matter.

My right hon. Friend the Member for Thirsk and MaIlan asked whether, when the time comes, which I am ardently

looking forward to because so much has to be done, we shall merely have con- sultations or a conference. I would prefer to start with consultations with the territories and their new Governments and then decide whether we should have a new review conference. What is certain is that the constructive work has to be done after the turn of the year, and it will be then that we shall look, as my hon. Friend the Member for Merton and Morden (Mr. Atkins) said, for some new form of association. He asked us not to make it too tight a link.

Perhaps I can conclude by speaking to the House with some feeling on this matter after the months that I have been handling it. Anyone who balances Rhodes' tradition with the new aspirations of the rising African races, which are so marked at present, has to try to match the old tradition with these new aspirations. It is going to be an act of great statesmanship. People will find that changes hurt, but let us decide at the conclusion f this debate to be constructive. Let us therefore accept the Government Amendment and go into the Lobby to support it.

Question put, That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question:—

The House divided: Ayes 180, Noes 261.

Division No. 11.] AYES [10.0 p.m.
Abse, Leo Corbet, Mrs. Freda Gunter, Ray
Ainsley, William Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Hale, Leslie (Oldham, W.)
Albu, Austen Cullen, Mrs. Alice Hannan, William
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Dalyell, Tam Harper, Joseph
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Darling, George Hart, Mrs. Judith
Awbery, Stan Davies, G. Elfed (Rhondda, E.) Hayman, F. H.
Bacon, Mlss Alice Davies, Ifor (Gower) Healey, Denis
Baird, John Davies, S. O. (Merthyr) Henderson, Rt.Hn.Arthur(RwlyRegis)
Barnett, Guy Delargy, Hugh Herbison, Miss Margaret
Baxter, William (Stirlingshire, W.) Diamond, John Hill, J. (Midlothian)
Beaney, Alan Dodds, Norman Hilton, A. V.
Bence, Cyril Donnelly, Desmond Holman, Percy
Bennett, J. (Glasgow, Bridgeton) Driberg, Tom Holt, Arthur
Benson, Sir George Dugdale, Rt. Hon. John Houghton, Douglas
Blackburn, F. Ede, Rt. Hon. C. Howell, Denis (Small Heath)
Blyton, William Edelman, Maurice Hoy, James H.
Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G. Evans, Albert Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey)
Bowden, Rt. Hn. H. W. (Leics. S. W.) Finch, Harold Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)
Bowles, Frank Fitch, Alan Hunter, A. E.
Boyden, James Fletcher, Eric Hynd, John (Attercliffe)
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Foot, Dingle (Ipswich) Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)
Bradley, Tom Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale) Irving, Sydney (Dartford)
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton) Janner, Sir Barnett
Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper) George, Lady Megan Lloyd(Crmrthn) Jay, Rt. Hon. Douglas
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Ginsburg, David Jones, Rt. Hn. A. Creech(Wakefield)
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C. Jones, Dan (Burnley)
Carmichael, N. G. Gourlay, Harry Kelley, Richard
Castle, Mrs. Barbara Greenwood, Anthony Kenyon, Clifford
Chapman, Donald Grey, Charles Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.
Cliffe, Michael Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) King, Dr. Horace
Collick, Percy Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly) Lawson, George
Ledger, Ron Pargiter, G. A. Steele, Thomas
Lee, Frederick (Newton) Parkin, B. T, Stewart, Miohael (Fulham)
Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock) Paton, John Stones, William
Lover, L. M. (Ardwick) Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd) Stross, Dr. Barnett(Stoke-on-Trent, C.)
Lipton, Marcus Pentland, Norman Swaln, Thomas
Loughlin, Charles Plummer, Sir Leslie Swingler, Stephen
Lubbock, Eric Popplewell, Ernest Taverne, D.
Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Prentice, R. E. Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)
MacColl, James Price, J. T. (Westhoughton) Thomas, George (Cardiff, W.)
MacDermot, Niall Probert, Arthur Thomas, lorwerth (Rhondda, W.)
McInnes, James Proctor, W. T. Thomson, G. M. (Dundee, E.)
McKay, John (Wallsend) Pursey, Cmdr. Harry Thornton, Ernest
Mackie, John (Enfield, East) Rankin, John Thorpe, Jeremy
MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling) Redhead, E. C. Wade, Donald
Mahon, Simon Reid, William Wainwright, Edwin
Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Reynolds, G. W. Warbey, William
Mapp, Charles Robertson, John (Paisley) Watkins, Tudor
Mayhew, Christopher Robinson, Kenneth (St. Pancras, N.) Weitzman, David
Mendelson, J. J. Rodgers, W. T. (Stockton) White, Mrs. Elrene
Milne, Edward Ross, William Wilkins, W. A.
Mitchison, G. R. Royle, Charles (Salford, West) Willey, Frederick
Monslow, Walter Short, Edward Williams, LI. (Abertillery)
Morris, John Silverman, Sydney (Nelson) Williams, W. R. (Openshaw)
Mulley, Frederick Skeffington, Arthur Willis, E. G. (Edinburgh, E.)
Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon) Slater, Mrs. Harriet (Stoke, N.) Winterbottom, R. E.
Oliver, G. H. Slater, Joseph (Sedgefield) Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
Oram, A. E. Small, William Yates, Victor (Ladywood)
Oswald, Thomas Sorensen, R. W.
Owen, Will Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.) Spriggs, Leslie Mr. Charles A. Howell and
Mr. Whitlock.
Agnew, sir Peter Costaln, A. P. Henderson, John (Cathcart)
Allan, Robert (Paddington, S.) Coulson, Michael Hendry, Forbes
Allason, James Crawley, Aidan Hicks Beach, Maj. W.
Arbuthnot, John Critchley, Julian Hiley, Joseph
Ashton, Sir Hubert Crosthwalte-Eyre, Col. Sir Oliver Hill, J. E. B. (S. Norfolk)
Atkins, Humphrey Crowder, F. P. Hirst, Geoffrey
Awdry, Daniel (Chippenham) Cunningham, Knox Hobson, Sir John
Balniel, Lord Curran, Charles Hocking, Philip N.
Barber, Anthony Dalkeith, Earl of Holland, Philip
Barlow, Sir John Dance, James Hollingworth, John
Barter, John d'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Hopkins, Alan
Batsford, Brian Deedes, Rt. Hon. W. F. Hornby, R. P.
Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. M. Hornsby-Smith, Rt. Hon. Dame P.
Bell, Ronald Doughty, Charles Howard, Hon. G. R. (St. Ives)
Bennett, F. M. (Torquay) Drayson, G. B. Howard, John (Southampton, Test)
Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gos & Fhm) du Cann, Edward Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral John
Bevins, Rt. Hon. Reginald Duncan, Sir James Hughes-Young, Michael
Bidgood, John C. Eden, John Hulbert, Sir Norman
Biffen, John Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Hutchison, Michael Clark
Biggs-Davison, John Elliott,R.W.(Nwcastle-upon-Tyne,N.) Iremonger, T. L.
Bingham, R. M. Errington, Sir Eric Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)
Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel Farey-Jones, F. W. James, David
Bishop, F. P. Farr, John Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)
Black, Sir Cyril Fell, Anthony Jennings, J. C.
Box, Donald Fisher, Nigel Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle)
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hon. John Fletcher-Cooke, Charles Johnson, Eric (Blackley)
Boyle, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward Foster, John Johnson Smith, Geoffrey
Braine, Bernard Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh(Stafford&Stone) Jones, Arthur (Northants, S)
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter Fraser, Ian (Plymouth, Sutton) Joseph, Rt. Hon. Sir Keith
Brooke, Rt. Hon. Henry Freeth, Denzil Kimball, Marcus
Brooman-White, R. Gammans, Lady Kitson, Timothy
Brown, Alan (Tottenham) Gardner, Edward Lambton, Viscount
Browne, Percy (Torrington) Gibson-Watt, David Lancaster, Col. C. G.
Buck, Antony Gilmour, Ian (Norfolk Central) Langford-Holt, Sir John
Bullard, Denys Gilmour, Sir John Leburn, Gilmour
Bullus, Wing Commander Eric Glyn, Dr. Alan (Clapham) Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry
Butcher, Sir Herbert Goodhew, Victor Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland)
Butler, Rt.Hn.R.A.(Saffron Walden) Gough, Frederick Lilley, F. J. P.
Campbell, sir David (Belfast, S.) Gower, Raymond Lindsay, Sir Martin
Campbell, Gordon (Moray & Nairn) Green, Alan Linstead, Sir Hugh
Carr, Compton (Barons Court) Gresham Cooke, R. Litchfield, Capt. John
Carr, Robert (Mitcham) Gurden, Harold Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Geoffrey(Sut'nC'dfield)
Channon, H, P. G. Hall, John (Wycombe) Longden, Gilbert
Clark, Henry (Antrim, N.) Hamilton, Michael (Wellingborough) Loveys, Walter H.
Clark, William (Nottingham, S.) Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.W.) Lucas, Sir Jocelyn
Clarke, Brig, Terence (Portamth, W.) Harris, Reader (Heston) Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh
Cooke, Robert Harrison, Brian (Maldon) McAdden, Sir Stephen
Cooper, A. E. Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye) MacArthur, Ian
Cooper-Key, Sir Neill Harvey, John (Walthamstow, E.) McLaren, Martin
Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K. Hastings, Stephen Maclay, Rt. Hon. John
Cordle, John Hay, John Maclean, Sir Fitzroy(Bute&N.Ayrs.)
Corfield, F, V. Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel Macleod, Rt. Hn. Iain (Enfield, W.)
McMaster, Stanley R. Profumo, Rt. Hon. John Taylor, W. J. (Bradford, N.)
Macmillan, Rt. Hn. Harold(Bromley) Proudfoot, Wilfred Temple, John M.
Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax) Pym, Francis Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret
Macpherson. Rt. Hn. Niall (Dumfries) Quennell, Miss J. M. Thomas, Peter (Conway)
Maddan, Martin Redmayne, Rt. Hon. Martin Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)
Maitland, Sir John Rees, Hugh Thompson, Richard (Croydon, S.)
Marlowe, Anthony Rees-Davies, W. R. Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin
Marten, Neil Renton, Rt. Hon. David Tiley, Arthur (Bradford, W.)
Mathew, Robert (Honlton) Ridley, Hon. Nicholas Tilney, John (Wavertree)
Matthews, Gordon (Meriden) Ridsdale, Julian Touche, Rt. Hon. Sir Gordon
Mawby, Ray Rippon, Rt. Hon. Geoffrey Turner, Colin
Maxwell-Hystop, R. J. Robinson, Rt. Hn. Sir R, (B'pool, S.) Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H,
Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C. Robson Brown, Sir William Tweedemulr, Lady
Mills, Stratton Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks) van straubenzee, W. R.
Miscampbell, Norman Royle, Anthony (Richmond, Surrey) Vane, W. M. F.
Montgomery, Fergus Russell, Ronald Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hon. Sir John
Morgan, William St. Clair, M. Vickers, Miss Joan
Nabarro, Gerald Scott-Hopkins, James Walder, David
Neave, Airey Seymour, Leslie Walker, Peter
Nicholson, Sir Godfrey Sharples, Richard Walker-Smith, Rt. Hon. Sir Derek
Oakshott, Sir Hendrie Shaw, M. Ward, Dame Irene
Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Shepherd, William Webster, David
Orr-Ewing, C. Ian Skeet, T. H. H. wells, John (Maidstone)
Page, Graham (Crosby) Smith, Dudley (Br'ntf'd & Chiswick) Whitelaw, William
Partridge, E. Smyth, Rt. Hon. Brig. Sir John Williams, Dudley (Exeter)
Pearson, Frank (Clitheroe) Speir, Rupert Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)
Percival, Ian Stanley, Hon. Richard Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)
Pike, Miss Mervyn Stevens, Geoffrey Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Pilkington, Sir Richard Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.) Wise, A. R.
Pitman, Sir James Stodart, J. A. Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick
Pitt, Dame Edith Studholme, Sir Henry Wood, Rt. Hon. Richard
Pott, Percivall Summers, Sir Spencer Woodhouse, C. M.
Powell, Rt. Hon. J. Enoch Tapsell, peter Woollam, John
Price, David (Eastleigh) Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)
Price, H. A. (Lewisham, w.) Taylor, Edwin (Bolton, E.) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Prior, J. M. L. Taylor, Frank (M'ch'st'r, Moss Side) Mr. Chichester-Clark and
Mr. Finlay.

Question put, That the proposed words be there added:—

The House divided: Ayes 256, Noes 178.

Division No. 12.] AYES [10.11 p.m.
Agnew, Sir Peter Clark, Henry (Antrim, N.) Gilmour, Sir John (East Fife)
Allason, James Clark, William (Nottingham, S.) Glyn, Dr. Alan (Clapham)
Arbuthnot, John Clarke, Brig. Terence(Portsmth, W.) Goodhew, Victor
Ashton, Sir Hubert Cooke, Robert Gough, Frederick
Atkins, Humphrey Cooper, A. E. Gower, Raymond
Awdry, Daniel (Chippenham) Cooper-Kay, Sir Neill Green, Alan
Balniel, Lord Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K. Gresham Cooke, R.
Barber, Anthony Cordle, John Gurden, Harold
Barlow, Sir John Corfield, F. V. Hall, John (Wycombe)
Barter, John Costain, A. P. Hamilton, Michael (Wellingborough)
Batsford, Brian Coulson, Michael Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.W.)
Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton Crawley, Aidan Harris, Reader (Heston)
Bell, Ronald Critchley, Julian Harrison, Brian (Maldon)
Bennett, F. M. (Torquay) Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. Sir Oliver Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye)
Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gos & Fhm) Crowder, F. P. Harvey, John (Waitnamstow, E.)
Bevins, Rt. Hon. Reginald Cunningham, Knox Hastings, Stephen
Bidgood, John C. Curran, Charles Hay, John
Biffen, John Dalkeith, Earl of Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel
Biggs-Davlson, John Dance, James Henderson, John (Cathcart)
Bingham, R. M. d'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Hendry, Forbes
Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel Deedes, Rt. Hon. W. F. Hicks Beach, Maj. W.
Bishop, F. P. Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. M. Hiley, Joseph
Black, Sir Cyril Doughty, Charles Hill, J. E. B. (S. Norfolk)
Box, Donald Drayson, G. B. Hirst, Geoffrey
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hon. John du Cann, Edward Hobson, Sir John
Boyle, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward Duncan, Sir James Hocking, Philip N.
Braine, Bernard Eden, John Holland, Philip
Bromlay-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Hollingworth, John
Brooke, Rt. Hon. Henry Eiliott, R. W.(Nwcastle-upon-Tyne, N.) Hopkins, Alan
Brooman-White, R. Errington, Sir Eric Hornby, R. P.
Brown, Alan (Tottenham) Farey-Jones, F. W. Hornsby-Smith, Rt. Hon. Dame P.
Browne, Percy (Torrington) Farr, John Howard, Hon. C. R. (St. Ives)
Buck, Antony Fisher, Nigel Howard, John (Southampton, Test)
Bullard, Denys Fletcher-Cooke, Charles Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral John
Bullus, Wing Commander Eric Foster, John Hughes-Young, Michael
Butcher, Sir Herbert Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh(Stafford&Stone) Hulbert, Sir Norman
Butler, Rt.Hn.R.A.(Saffron Warden) Fraser, Ian (Plymouth, Sutton) Hutchison, Michael Clark
Campbell, Sir David (Belfast, S.) Freeth, Denzil Iremonger, T. L.
Campbell, Gordon (Moray & Nairn) Gammans, Lady Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)
Carr, Compton (Barons Court) Gardner, Edward James, David
Carr, Robert (Mitcham) Gibson-Watt, David Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)
Channon, H. P. G. Gilmour, Ian (Norfolk Central) Jennings, J. C.
Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle) Nabarro, Gerald Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)
Johnson, Eric (Blackley) Neave, Airey Stodart, J. A.
Johnson Smith, Geoffrey Nicholson, Sir Godfrey Studholme, Sir Henry
Jones, Arthur (Northants, S) Oakshott, Sir Hendrie Summers, Sir Spencer
Joseph, Rt. Hon. Sir Keith Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Tapsell, Peter
Kimball, Marcus Orr-Ewing, C. Ian Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)
Kitson, Timothy Page, Graham (Crosby) Taylor, Edwin (Bolton, E.)
Lambton, Viscount Partridge, E. Taylor, Frank (M'ch'st'r, Moss Side>
Lancaster, Col. C. G. Pearson, Frank (Clitheroe) Taylor, W. J. (Bradford, N.)
Langford-Holt, Sir John Percival, Ian Temple, John M.
Leburn, Gilmour Pike, Miss Mervyn Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret
Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry Pilkington, Sir Richard Thomas, Peter (Conway)
Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland) Pitman, Sir James Thompson, Richard (Croydon, S.)
Lilley, F. J. P. Pitt, Dame Edith Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin
Lindsay, Sir Martin Powell, Rt. Hon. J. Enoch Tiley, Arthur (Bradford, W.)
Linstead, Sir Hugh Price, David (Eastleigh) Tilney, John (Wavertree)
Litchfield, Capt. John Price, H. A. (Lewisham, W.) Touche, Rt. Hon. Sir Gordon
Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Geoffrey (Sut'nC'(dfield) Prior, J. M. L. Turner, Colin
Longden, Gilbert Profumo, Rt. Hon. John Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.
Loveys, Walter H. Proudfoot, Wilfred Tweedsmuir, Lady
Lucas, Sir Jocelyn Pym, Francis van Straubenzee, W. R.
Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Quennell, Miss J. M. Vane, W. M. F.
McAdden, Sir Stephen Redmayne, Rt. Hon. Martin Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hon. Sir John
McArthur, Ian Rees, Hugh Vickers, Miss Joan
McLaren, Martin Rees-Davies, W. R. Walder, David
Maclay, Rt. Hon. John Renton, Rt. Hon. David Walker, Peter
Maclean, Sir Fitzroy(Bute&N.Ayrs) Ridley, Hon. Nicholas Walker-Smith, Rt. Hon. Sir Derek
Macleod, Rt. Hn. Iain (Enfield, W.) Ridsdale, Julian Ward, Dame Irene
McMaster, Stanley R. Rippon, Rt. Hon. Geoffrey Webster, David
Macmillan, Rt. Hn. Harold(Bromley) Robinson, Rt. Hn. Sir R. (B'pool,S.) Wells, John (Maidstone)
Macmillan, Maurice (Hallfax) Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks) Whitelaw, William
Macpherson, Rt. Hn. Niall(Dumfries) Royle, Anthony (Richmond, Surrey) Williams, Dudley (Exeter)
Maddan, Martin Russell, Ronald Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S)
Maltland, Sir John St. Clair, M. Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)
Marlowe, Anthony Scott-Hopkins, James Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Marten, Neil Seymour, Leslie Wise, A. R.
Mathew, Robert (Honiton) Sharples, Richard Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick
Matthews, Gordon (Meriden) Shaw, M. Wood, Rt. Hon. Richard
Mawby, Ray Shepherd, William Woodhouse, C. M.
Maxwell-Hyslop, R. J. Skeet, T. H. H. Woollam, John
Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C. Smith, Dudley (Br'ntf'd & Chiswick)
Mills, Stratton Smyth, Rt. Hon. Brig. Sir John TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Miscampbell, Norman Speir, Rupert Mr. Chichester-Clark and
Montgomery, Fergus Stanley, Hon. Richard Mr. Finlay.
Morgan, William Stevens, Geoffrey
Abse, Leo Davies, S. O. (Merthyr) Houghton, Douglas
Ainsley, William Delargy, Hugh Howell, Denis (Small Heath)
Albu, Austen Diamond, John Hoy, James H.
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Dodd's, Norman Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey)
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Donnelly, Desmond Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)
Awbery, Stan Driberg, Tom Hunter, A. E.
Bacon, Miss Alice Dugdale, Rt. Hon. John Hynd, John (Attercliffe)
Baird, John Ede, Rt. Hon. C. Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)
Barnett, Guy Edelman, Maurice Irving, Sydney (Dartford)
Baxter, William (Stirlingshire, W.) Evans, Albert Janner, Sir Barnett
Beaney, Alan Finch, Harold Jay, Rt. Hon. Douglas
Bence, Cyril Fitch, Alan Jones, Rt. Hn. A. Creech(Wakefield)
Bennett, J. (Glasgow, Bridgeton) Fletcher, Eric Jones, Dan (Burnley)
Benson, Sir George Foot, Dingle (Ipswich) Kelley, Richard
Blackburn, F. Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale) Kenyon, Clifford
Blyton, William Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton) Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.
Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G. George, Lady Megan Lloyd(Crmrthn) King, Dr. Horace
Bowden, Rt. Hn. H. W.(Lelcs, S.W.) Ginsburg, David Lawson, George
Bowles, Frank Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C. Ledger, Ron
Boyden, James Gourlay, Harry Lee, Frederick (Newton)
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Greenwood, Anthony Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock)
Bradley, Tom Grey, Charles Lever, L. M. (Ardwick)
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) Lipton, Marcus
Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper) Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly) Loughlin, Charles
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Gunter, Ray Lubbock, Eric
Carmichael, N. G Hale, Leslie (Oldham, W.) Mabon, Dr. J, Dickson
Castle, Mrs. Barbara Hannan, William MacColl, James
Chapman, Donald Harper, Joseph MacDermot, Niall
Cliffe, Michael Hart, Mrs. Judith McInnes, James
Collick, Percy Hayman, F. H. McKay, John (Wallsend)
Corbet, Mrs. Freda Healey, Denis Mackie, John (Enfield, East)
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Henderson, Rt. Hn. Arthur(RwlyRegis) Macpherson, Malcolm (Stirling)
Cullen. Mrs. Alice Herbison, Miss Margaret Mahon, Simon
Dalyell, Tam Hill, J. (Midlothian) Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)
Darling, George Hilton, A. V, Mapp, Charles
Davies, C. Elfed (Rhondda, E.) Holman, Percy Mayhew, Christopher
Davies, Ifor (Gower) Holt, Arthur Mendelson, J. J.
Milne, Edward Reld, William Thomas, George (Cardiff, W.)
Mitchison, G. R. Reynolds, G. W. Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)
Monslow, Waltar Robertson, John (Paisley) Thomson, G. M. (Dundee, E.)
Morris, John Robinson, Kenneth (St. Pancras, N.) Thornton, Ernest
Mulley, Frederick Rodgers, W. T. (Stockton) Thorpe, Jeremy
Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon) Ross, William Wade, Donald
Oliver, G. H. Royle, Charles (Salford, West) Wainwright, Edwin
Oram, A. E. Short, Edward Warbey, William
Oswald, Thomas Silverman, Sydney (Nelson) Watkins, Tudor
Owen, Will Skeffington, Arthur Weitzman, David
Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.) Slater, Mrs. Harriet (Stoke, N.) White, Mrs. Eirene
Pargiter, G. A. Slater, Joseph (Sedgefield) Wilkins, W. A.
Parkin, B. T. Small, William Willey, Frederick
Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd) Sorensen, R. W, Williams, LI. (Abertillery)
Pentland, Norman Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank Williams, W. R. (Openshaw)
Plummer, Sir Leslie Spriggs, Leslie Willis, E. G. (Edinburgh, E.)
Popplewell, Ernest Steele, Thomas Winterbottom, R. E.
Prentice, R. E. Stewart, Michael (Fulham) Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
Price, J. T. (Westhoughton) Stones, William Yates, Victor (Ladywood)
Probert, Arthur Stross, Dr. Barnett(Stoke-on-Trent, C.)
Proctor, W. T. Swain, Thomas TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Pursey, Cmdr. Harry Swingler, Stephen Mr. Charles A. Howell and
Rankin, John Taverne, D. Mr. Whitlock.
Redhead, E. C. Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)

Main Question, as amended, put and agreed to.

Resolved, That this House welcomes the further constitutional progress in Nyasaland as reflected in the agreed Report of the Nyasaland Constitutional Conference, notes that elections under new Constitutions are pending in Northern and Southern Rhodesia, and endorses Her Majesty's Government's continuing efforts to promote a constructive solution to the problem of the future association of the territories in Central Africa.