Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the reforms which have been introduced by the Governor, Sir Andrew Cohen, have been received with the greatest appreciation by the farmers and peasants of Uganda? Will he consider extending these reforms to the neighbouring East African countries?
Following is the reply:I assume that the hon. Member is referring to the recommendations contained in the Report, which has recently been issued, of the Commission of Inquiry into the progress of the Co-operative Movement in Mengo, Masaka and Busoga Districts. The Protectorate Government has announced that it agrees with the two main conclusions of the Commission of Inquiry. These are:—
Government accordingly proposes to introduce a Bill at the next convenient meeting of the Legislative Council to give effect to these proposals.
- (i) that the provisions of the Co-operative Societies Ordinance, 1946, should be amended so as to enable representatives of the registered co-operative movement to be more closely associated with its administration and with the direction of co-operative development generally, and
- (ii) that the supervisory powers of the Registrar should be relaxed in order to give more responsibility to the Co-operative Societies themselves.I cannot accept the imputation contained in the second part of the Question. The Uganda Government have recently announced a scheme of reorganisation of the coffee industry with the following main objectives:—
These proposals have been put forward for public discussion and it is proposed to set up an ad hoc Committee of the Legislative Council to examine the draft Bill that will have to be prepared to give legislative effect to any proposals which may finally be decided upon.
- (a) A continuation of coffee marketing and processing on an organised and orderly basis.
- (b) Improved primary marketing facilities to meet the producers' needs and to provide for African participation in the buying of their crop.
- (c) The provision of additional curing works to provide increased processing facilities and the participation of African interests in the curing and grading of their coffee.
- (d) The creation of a central Coffee Industry Board responsible for the general organisation of the industry and the purchase and re-sale of both African and non-African produced coffee.
- (e) The establishment of a common price structure for all comparable grades of coffee offered for sale by all producers.