HC Deb 24 March 1964 vol 692 c237
21. Mr. G. M. Thomson

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what steps he is taking to ensure that the wishes of the local population of Bechuanaland are met regarding the hours of opening of the gates at the frontier between Bechuanaland and the Republic of South Africa.

Mr. Fisher

Representations by the Government of Bechuanaland have resulted in some relaxation in the arrangements made by the Republican authorities.

Mr. Thomson

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that my understanding is that in the Legislative Council for Bechuanaland representations are at present being made that the gates should be kept open until, I think, 8 o'clock at night? Will he do everything he can, perhaps in association with the Foreign Minister, to ensure that the interests of the people of Bechuanaland are paramount in this matter?

Mr. Fisher

Certainly I know of no complaints at this moment. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman is better informed than I am about it. The main road north is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. The majority of the other roads were open, I think, only until 4 p.m. but I believe there have been relaxations in respect of those roads. I have not got the precise hours in mind, but I know there has been some improvement.