§ 16. Mr. Faulds
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.
§ Mr. Bottomley
When announcing the start of the informal talks which are now continuing between officials in Salisbury, 1213 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.
§ Mr. Faulds
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.
§ Mr. Speaker
Order. Some hon. Members are drifting back into the practice of asking long supplementaries.
§ Mr. Evelyn King
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?
§ Mr. Bottomley
However the Acts came about, they cause racial discrimination, and I should like some day to see racial discrimination removed altogether.
§ Mr. Biggs-Davison
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?