HC Deb 15 May 1947 vol 437 c184W
Mr. Dodds-Parker

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether, with a view to economy in constructional and maintenance costs of landlines and other advantages, any consideration has yet been given to the gradual installation of a post office radio-telephonic system in the case of widely-separated areas in the African Colonies; and what conclusion has been arrived at.

Mr. Creech Jones

The use of radiotelephony is being fully considered by the African Governments in connection with their plans for the development of telecommunications, but no general conclusion can be stated, as the relative merits of wireless and land lines have to be compared in each individual case. Apart from the question of cost, the use of radiotelephony is restricted by the limited number of frequencies available and by interference and lack of privacy. Radiotelephony is, however, being used in a number of cases. The needs of outlying areas for communications services, whether by telegraph or telephone, will also have to be balanced against the needs of other sections of the Colonial communities in the light of the total funds available.