HC Deb 27 April 1909 vol 4 cc316-7W

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies, in view of recent events as to some of the officers in the service of the Crown Colonies and Protectorates, if he can state whether it is the intention of the Government to provide accommodation suitable for such officers and their wives, and to give free or assisted passages to the wives of such officers?

Colonel SEELY

The conditions of life in the various Crown Colonies and Protectorates differ so much that it is impossible to lay down any rule on this subject which would be applicable to all. In the older and more healthy colonies, where suitable accommodation can be obtained and officers usually reside for long periods, without returning to this country, free passages are provided on first appointment, within certain limits, not only for the officers themselves, but also for their wives and children. In the Colonies and Protectorates of tropical Africa, where the climatic and other conditions necessitate frequent visits to this country and are not generally suitable for European, women or children, the Government provides quarters for officers, and in some instances (when the conditions admit of it) for their wives also. In the case of these Colonies and Protectorates free passages are not provided for wives and children, but the officers themselves are granted frequent and long periods of leave of absence with free passages, home and out again.