HC Deb 14 June 1956 vol 554 cc47-8W
Mr. J. Johnson

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what United Kingdom delegates attended the South Pacific Conference at Suva; what instructions were given regarding the fighting of alcoholism in Colonial Territories; and what recommendations were made.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

This Conference, was held under the Chairmanship of Sir Ronald Garvey, Governor of Fiji and Senior Commissioner for the United Kingdom on the South Pacific Commission. The delegates were appointed by the territories within the scope of the Commission.

Those attending from the British Dependencies were: Fiji Delegates: Hon. Ratu Kamisese Kapaiwai Tuimacilai Mara and Hon. K. S. Reddy. Alternate Delegates: Hon. Rev. S. G. C. Cowled, O.B.E., and Mr. Josefa Rigamoto, M.M. British SolQmon Islands Delegates: Mr. Silas Sitai and Rev. Leonard Alafurai. Gilbert and Ellice Islands Gilbert Islands Delegates: Kaobunang Iete and Tebao Awerika. Ellice Islands Delegates: Tealipi Lauti and Neli Lifuka. Advisers for both Gilbert and Ellice Islands: Mr. R. Turpin and Ioteba Tamuera Uriam. Mr. M. H. Townsend attended as Adviser from the British side of the New Hebrides Condominium. Mr. H. H. Vaskess, the Second Commissioner for the United Kingdom on the South Pacific Commission attended as an observer.

The resolution about alcoholism emerged from a discussion in the Social and Health Committee of the Conference; it had not appeared in the Conference's agenda. As adopted it reads: The Conference stresses the extreme importance of campaigns against excessive use of alcohol, where such exists, and asks the Commission to set up an information committee which would centralise information and co-ordinate the activities of the territorial anti-alcoholism committees and other similar bodies. The Conference is of opinion that the problem of excessive liquor drinking is not only the problem of the indigenous peoples but also of the other sections of the island communities. The best solution could well be one that applies to all without discrimination.

At its Fifteenth Session, which was held immediately after the Conference, the Commission noted this resolution for consideration at its next session later this year.

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