HC Deb 20 May 1965 vol 712 cc1642-3
4. Mr. Freeson

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department to what extent the figure of 10,000 for evasion of control under the Commonwealth immigrants Act relates to certain Commonwealth countries only; what these countries were; and if he will give the evasion figures for other Commonwealth countries during the last two years.

Sir F. Soskice

I would refer my hon. Friend to item (5) of the reply that I gave on 22nd March to a Question by my hon. Friend the Member for Dearne Valley (Mr. Wainwright).

Mr. Freeson

To the best of my knowledge, the extent to which evasion may or may not be taking place from Commonwealth countries, other than those which have been the main subject of debate in the House on the subject of immigration in recent months, has not been made clear. Could this kind of information be provided?

Sir F. Soskice

The figures which I gave in the Answer to which I have referred disclosed all the material from which inferences could be drawn as to whether there was any, and if so the scale of, evasion on the part of immigrants from the old Commonwealth countries.

Mr. Thorneycroft

In view of the great anxiety felt about these matters, could not a much fuller statement be made by the Home Secretary at an early date on the subject of evasion and on the rather disquieting figures about immigration which are now available? Does the right hon. Gentleman intend to make an early statement about these matters?

Sir F. Soskice

I do not feel that I could usefully embark upon any full statement until the return of the Mountbatten Mission with the information which it will bring back and the conclusions which it will form. Until that time, the matter must rest on the figures which have been published from time to time and, in particular, those to which I have just referred.