Colonial Affairs.

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons on 4th August 1942.

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Photo of Captain Sir Peter Macdonald Captain Sir Peter Macdonald , Isle of Wight

This Debate has been extremely interesting, and I congratulate Members of the Opposition who have taken the opportunity of raising Colonial matters again after the prolonged Debate that we had quite recently. The point that I want to raise is the question on which the last Debate rested, the setting up of a Colonial Development Board. A great many of my colleagues put their names to the Motion that we discussed last time, and I got a good deal of support for the proposition, both inside and outside the House. The right hon. Gentleman agreed that he would give full consideration to it. The same question has been raised to-day, and I hope the right hon. Gentleman will give us some encouragement for thinking that this Board is going to be set up in the near future. Most of the problems that have been brought forward to-day arise because we have no definite long-term Colonial policy. As far as I know we never have had one and we are not likely to have one unless we have some body, sitting permanently, which is able to work out a policy and carry it out in spite of changes of Government and parties and policy in the House. We can only have continuity of policy if we have a permanent Board. I urge the right hon. Gentleman to give us a decision on the question as soon as possible because there is a very strong feeling, not only in the House but generally throughout the country, and also throughout the Colonial Empire, that some such body should be set up. I urge him to come to a decision on the question, otherwise I am afraid my hon. Friends and I will be raising it again in a very short time and demanding another Debate.