Orders of the Day — African Territories

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 31st July 1957.

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Photo of Commander Charles Donaldson Commander Charles Donaldson , Roxburghshire, Selkirkshire and Peeblesshire 12:00 am, 31st July 1957

I will concede part of what the hon. Member has just said. However, the hon. Member would do himself, his country and the Africans better service if he would try to reach a balance between the African population and the white population who live in those territories in which he is most interested.

I go further and ask where the African people would be if the white settlers who have used their own money and deployed their own energies and intelligence and willingness to work and strive for Africa had not done so. Where would they be with the increasing amount of self-determination which has been given to the people of Africa?

The hon. Member made a comparison between African and West Indian Federation which is about to come into being. In years past, when I was in the Navy, I travelled about the West Indies, and I believe the West Indians would resent the comparison of conditions which the hon. Member has sought to impose on the House.

I can tell him with absolute sincerity from my own observations that the coloured people in the West Indies are among the most loyal, upstanding and forthright subjects of the British Crown, of the Commonwealth and Empire whom I have ever seen in my travels about the world. They will not like the comparison he has made tonight with what is taking place in Africa. They will not like him for what he has said, and he will hear more about it from them in due course.