HC Deb 14 June 1945 vol 411 c1820W

The position in the Union differs materially from that existing in other Dominions, in that, owing to its large non-European population, the Union cannot absorb people belonging to manual or unskilled occupations, including labourers for agricultural purposes. Furthermore, the Union Government have repeatedly stated that their first care will be rehabilitation of their own demobilised ex-Servicemen and women,, and until this has been effected they are not prepared to consider any large scale scheme of immigration in the immediate post-war period. Against this general background, the Union Government are prepared to consider applications from members of the United Kingdom Forces and, in particular, members of the Royal Air Force who received training in South Africa and many of whom, in the meanwhile, married South African nationals. While the Union Government find themselves unable at this stage to embark on any big immigration scheme, they will welcome skilled workers in such numbers as the needs of the Union and the absorptive capacity of the Union admit: and from the latter point of view such settlers must be carefully selected.