asked the Minister of Information whether it is the custom of the British Broadcasting Corporation and the Minister of Information to consult other Ministers on the advisability of giving broadcasts on subjects that do not involve questions of public security but only the expression of opinion; and, if so, whether he will discontinue this practice as being unfair to the Ministers concerned and contrary to the public interest?
Yes, Sir. The B.B.C. and the Ministry of Information occasionally consult other Ministries on such subjects but do not necessarily accept their advice. Fairness will always be our objective; and, if ever we make mistakes in this respect, we count upon the healthy stimulus of criticism from this House and the Press to narrow the margin of our error.
Does not my right hon. Friend think, in cases where public security is not involved, that it is very embarrassing for Ministers to be asked whether matters affecting their own Departments should be broadcast or not? Is it not possible for the Ministry of Information to make up its own mind?