HC Deb 31 July 1962 vol 664 cc389-90
15. Mr. Longden

asked the Secretary for Technical Co-operation what steps he is taking to encourage British administrators, teachers, doctors, veterinary surgeons, engineers and agricultural officers who are now employed in the Colonial Territories to remain there if their services are required by the new Governments after independence; and how and by whom it is proposed that their salaries and subsequent pensions shall be paid and their future prospects made secure.

The Secretary for Technical Cooperation (Mr. Dennis Vosper)

These officers are employed by the overseas Governments concerned, not by the British Government, and their salaries and pensions are paid by those Governments. The British Government help in this by reimbursing under the Overseas Service Aid Scheme the cost of inducement pay and education allowances, and half the cost of passages. We also reimburse under the Scheme the cost of additional pensions arising from inducement pay and half the cost of compensation.

Mr. Longden

Is my right hon. Friend aware that these British administrators are already drifting away much faster than they can possibly be replaced by Africans? Would not it be wiser and more generous for the Government to assume full responsibility for their salaries and pensions and thus be able to transfer them wherever their services are required and most necessary?

Mr. Vosper

I am aware that many of these officers are doing a first-class job in overseas territories. But I cannot compel overseas Governments to continue to employ them. All that I can do, and I do it, is to make the terms reasonable for them to continue serving.