The matter is not one on which any general policy can be laid down. Conditions differ widely in different Colonies, and the character of the franchise must necessarily vary according to local circumstances.
Will not the right hon. Gentleman recognise that as we profess the principles of democracy it would be wise to demonstrate these principles to the world by applying them as soon as possible to these particular areas?
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether the Colonial policy of His Majesty's Government includes the provision of universal free education for the Colonial population; and what is the approximate proportion of the natives in our African Colonies and Mandated Territories who are now receiving such education? inquiry going into the whole question at the present time.
The policy of Colonial Governments aims at the provision of universal free education as soon as circumstances permit, but the House will realise that, in a large number of Colonies, many years must elapse before this object can be achieved. With regard to the second part of the question, the proportion naturally varies from territory to territory, but I understand that the average figure for all the territories is 12 per cent.