Oral Answers to Questions — Cabinet Ministers (Official Secrets Acts)

– in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 15th November 1960.

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Photo of Mr David Ginsburg Mr David Ginsburg , Dewsbury 12:00 am, 15th November 1960

asked the Prime Minister whether, in the light of the recent case of Churchill v. Nabarro in the High Court, he will clarify the regulations governing the conduct of Cabinet Ministers under the Official Secrets Acts in their relations with journalists.

Photo of Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Harold Macmillan , Bromley

The conduct of Cabinet Ministers in these matters is governed by the Official Secrets Acts and by the Privy Councillor's Oath.

Photo of Mr David Ginsburg Mr David Ginsburg , Dewsbury

Is the Prime Minister aware that the question which goes to the heart of this action, of whether Cabinet secrets were reported verbatim or not, reflects gravely on the honour of Ministers? Is not he aware that it is a cause of grave disquiet in the country, and will not he hold an inquiry.

Photo of Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Harold Macmillan , Bromley

I think it would be undesirable for me to comment on statements, allegations or suggestions made during that case, especially as I understand that a right of appeal still exists.