Makerere College,

Oral Answers to Questions — Colonial Empire – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th October 1949.

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Photo of Colonel Sir Ralph Clarke Colonel Sir Ralph Clarke , East Grinstead 12:00 am, 26th October 1949

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies how many students there are in the Makerere College, East Africa, at the present time; and how many of them are studying agriculture.

Mr. Creech Jones:

There are 222 students at Makerere at present, of whom 16 are taking the Agricultural course.

Photo of Colonel Sir Ralph Clarke Colonel Sir Ralph Clarke , East Grinstead

Does not the right hon. Gentleman consider that in view of the fact that this part of Africa is almost entirely an agricultural area and that under-nutrition is one of the great problems of Africa, a higher proportion of agricultural students would be advisable; and does he not feel that by his present policy he is encouraging a large number of young persons for whom there is little likelihood of employment and almost certain frustration?

Mr. Creech Jones:

We are trying to get more balance so far as the studies of university college students are concerned, so that the students may return to the economic occupations available to them. We are also giving special attention to students who take up agriculture and veterinary work, etc., by holding out new incentives. The inter-university council has recently sent a deputation to Makerere for the purpose of tackling this problem.

Photo of Mr John Hynd Mr John Hynd , Sheffield, Attercliffe

Can the Minister say whether the new incentives have resulted in a greater number of agricultural students going into the industry when they have completed their subject?

Mr. Creech Jones:

It is much too early to say at the moment.

Photo of Sir Archer Baldwin Sir Archer Baldwin , Leominster

Can the right hon. Gentleman take more active steps with regard to this matter? This has been going on for three or four years, and it is essential that the African native should be taught how to handle his land properly.

Mr. Creech Jones:

I fully agree, and the authorities in East Africa are fully alive to this aspect of the matter.