HL Deb 08 November 1966 vol 277 cc785-6

My Lords, perhaps it would be for the convenience of the House if I were to make a Business Statement to explain why I do not propose to move the Business of the House Motion, standing in my name on the Order Paper, later this afternoon. Because of the present position with regard to Southern Rhodesia, I understand that the noble Lord, Lord Carrington, whom we all welcome back most cordially today, has decided not to move the Motion which has until to-day stood in his name for next Thursday. The Government would be glad to find a day for a debate on Southern Rhodesia at a later date, after consultation, or (shall we say?) when there is something new to discuss. The House, therefore, will continue to have on the Order Paper the Southern Rhodesia Act 1965 (Continuation) Order 1966, which my noble friend Lord Beswick will move, and I venture to hope that because of the present situation the House will agree that this should be debated very briefly. The time of the meeting of the House next Thursday will in the circumstances revert to 3 o'clock.


My Lords, may I, first of all, thank the noble Earl the Leader of the House for his kind words? I hope he will still think the same way in a week or two's time. The noble Earl is quite right in saying that I do not intend to move the Motion in my name. I do not think that it would be at all useful to do so this week. Nevertheless, it may very well be, depending upon the events of the next few days, that it will be necessary that there should be a debate of that kind in your Lordships' House. I would ask the noble Earl whether he would bear that in mind and, if necessary, make time for a debate of that kind.


My Lords, I will certainly do everything in my power to meet the noble Lord, who is always so reasonable on these matters.


My Lords, there are some of us in the House who have taken a rather strong view on the sanctions and might, I think, wish to say a very few words on Thursday when this Order is laid before your Lordships. But I can assure the noble Earl, so far as I am concerned at any rate, that my words will be very few.


My Lords, I am usually sorry to hear that, but not so sorry on this occasion.