Land

Oral Answers to Questions — Rhodesia – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 14th June 1966.

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Photo of Mr Andrew Faulds Mr Andrew Faulds , Smethwick 12:00 am, 14th June 1966

asked the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations what progress has been made in the discussions with Rhodesian officials; and if he will now make non-discrimination in land allocation a precondition of any advance towards legal independence.

Photo of Mr Arthur Bottomley Mr Arthur Bottomley , Middlesbrough East

When announcing the start of the informal talks which are now continuing between officials in Salisbury, the Prime Minister made it clear that no final settlement could be accepted which did not satisfy the six principles; these principles, of course, include the need for progress towards ending racial discrimination.

Photo of Mr Andrew Faulds Mr Andrew Faulds , Smethwick

Would my right hon. Friend please consider the possibility of abrogating or insisting on the abrogation of these Land Apportionment Acts before any agreement is reached with the rebellious régime? Under these Acts, the white Rhodesians, who are only 8 per cent of the population, have reserved for themselves 50 per cent. of the land. I am sure that he realises that this causes great resentment among the real Rhodesians.

Photo of Mr Arthur Bottomley Mr Arthur Bottomley , Middlesbrough East

What I said in answer to the original Question covers the supplementary question.

Photo of Dr Horace King Dr Horace King , Southampton, Itchen

Order. Some hon. Members are drifting back into the practice of asking long supplementaries.

Photo of Mr Evelyn King Mr Evelyn King , South Dorset

While welcoming some of the right hon. Gentleman's Answer, would he agree that the initiative towards Land Apportionment Acts came not from the white settlers but from the United Kingdom Government itself when the Labour Party was in office?

Photo of Mr Arthur Bottomley Mr Arthur Bottomley , Middlesbrough East

However the Acts came about, they cause racial discrimination, and I should like some day to see racial discrimination removed altogether.

Photo of Mr John Biggs-Davison Mr John Biggs-Davison , Chigwell

In considering the changes in the Land Apportionment Acts, would the right hon. Gentleman keep in mind the difficulties which would face African traders if they had to confront European competition?