HC Deb 30 April 1963 vol 676 c901
Q6. Dr. D. Johnson

asked the Prime Minister what action he proposes to take on the Report of the Radcliffe Tribunal on the Vassall case and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister

I would ask my hon. Friend to await the debate on the Report of the Tribunal.

Dr. Johnson

While appreciating my right hon. Friend's reticence in present circumstances, may I ask whether he is aware that the Vassall case is the second—the first being the Portland spy case—reported upon by Sir Charles Romer, in which the suspicions of humble people about dangerous spies have been disregarded by those in authority? Between now and next week, will my right hon. Friend consult his hon. and learned Friend the Attorney-General about reopening his inquiry into the possibility of appointing a Parliamentary Commissioner or ombudsman who could receive the complaints of individual people?

The Prime Minister

I think that it would be for the convenience of the House to await the debate for the general discussion. From what I have heard, I think that it will be possible for the discussion to take a fairly wide form.

Mr. Wade

In reply to a Question of mine last Thursday, the Prime Minister indicated that the need for a review of the tribunal procedure would be relevant in the debate upon the Radcliffe Report. Is he now able to say whether the debate will be sufficiently wide for that purpose and whether he himself will be dealing with it when he takes part in the debate?

The Prime Minister

It is, of course, for Mr. Speaker to decide what is or is not in order in the debate, but I understand that a Motion will be put down which will give the maximum possible latitude.