HC Deb 26 January 1955 vol 536 cc36-7W
Mr. Creech Jones

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies if his attention has been drawn to the comments of the resident magistrate in sentencing the president and secretary of the African National Congress in Northern Rhodesia to two months' hard labour for being found in possession of prohibited publications, that they were both educated and intelligent men, and that the publications were harmless to persons of intelligence and experience; how many non-Africans have been charged with offences under the legislation authorising such prosecutions; and whether he will now review this enactment.

Mr. Hopkinson

I have seen newspaper reports of the proceedings. The Governor, however, informs me that the two persons convicted in this case have appealed against conviction. I regret therefore that I am unable to reply on the second and the last parts of the Question, since I am advised that they raise matters which remainsub judice.

On the third part of the Question, a number of non-Africans have been prosecuted under the section of the Northern Rhodesian Penal Code which authorises prosecutions for possession of prohibited literature; but considerable research would be required to provide exact figures since the Legislation has been in force for over 16 years.