§ Mr. Speaker
Before I open the debate perhaps I might announce that I have not selected the Amendment in the names of the right hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot) and some of his hon. Friends. The debate will end at seven o'clock according to Standing Order 18 (3). I urge those who wish to take part to make brief speeches.
§ 3.41 p.m.
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home (Kinross and West Perthshire)
I beg to move,That this House condemns Her Majesty's Government for withdrawing Sir Frederick Crawford's passport.The Motion is a direct consequence of the Government's decision to impound the British passport of Sir Frederick Crawford, and of the replies given by the Commonwealth Secretary to Questions last Thursday when he failed to establish any justification for his action, at least in the opinion of this side of the House.
The House will recall the exchanges on Thursday. On the day before, Wednesday, at about 1.30 p.m., I learned from a friend of Sir Frederick that his passport had been removed. Knowing his reputation as a liberal-minded man, and as the most non-political of persons, I felt that that must have been a mistake by an official at London Airport.
I therefore telephoned the right hon. Gentleman's office and hoped, when I talked to an official there, that the right hon. Gentleman might be able to seize the chance of acting rapidly, because I anticipated that if the action was allowed to stand all concerned in that decision would be made a public laughing-stock. I wish that the right hon. Gentleman had got that message in time. I believe that he did not get it until about nine o'clock that night. If he had got it in time, I feel that he might have been 1042 able to do something to reverse the decision.
We now know that I was wrong to assume that that was an airport official's error. There must have been a blacklist from which the passport officer took Sir Frederick's name, and what the House will wish to establish this afternoon is was there such a list, is there such a list, who is on it, and is this blacklist confined to British airports? As I shall tell the House in a moment, one British subject in this Rhodesian context has had his passport confiscated in Malta, a Commonwealth country, and another by the German authorities in Frankfurt.
Is this list circulated overseas within the Commonwealth and elsewhere abroad? What qualifications are there for membership of that list? Are they that the individual has been seen in company with or associating with the Smith régime in Rhodesia? Or is it that the individual has assisted the Rhodesian Government by, let us say, retaining some commercial connections in that country?
We can only judge by the cases which have come to light so far. There is that of Sir Frederick Crawford. In spite of the occasional jeers from the benches opposite, I repeat that Sir Frederick's record is well known to everybody in Britain and in Africa. He has always been recognised as a liberal figure who has taken no part whatsoever in active politics either in Rhodesia or in Britain—
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home
Everybody, except perhaps the hon. Member for Salford, West (Mr. Orme), who said "Ah", knows that the Anglo-American Corporation has gone out of its way to invest in and develop African countries for the benefit of Africans.
The second case which has come to the notice of the House since that of Sir Frederick's is that of Mr. Harper, an ex-Mayor of Salisbury, and a Freeman of the City of London, who, on a number of 1043 occasions, has spoken publicly in Rhodesia against the Rhodesian Front, and has declared publicly that he has voted against Mr. Smith's Government. Is it possible that Mr. Harper has been wrongly listed; that the Mr. Harper who was meant to be listed is the member of Mr. Smith's Government? Is it that the inclusion of this ex-Mayor of Salisbury is a mistake, a case of mistaken identity? It is too bad a joke in this case. The Commonwealth Secretary shakes his head. What is the charge against Mr. Harper? He had his passport removed in Malta.
Next there is Commander Peters, a member of the Royal Navy now retired, who writes:I personally support no political party either in Rhodesia or elsewhere.His passport was taken away in Frankfurt, and so was that of a highly-placed civil servant who served this country during the war. He was on his way on a private visit to Norway from Rhodesia. His passport was taken away by the German authorities, not even by the British consul. We want to know—and I think that the House wants to know—the criteria on which people are treated in this way.
On 10th April the right hon. Member for Cardiff, West (Mr. George Thomas) wrote to my hon. Friend the Member for Twickenham (Mr. Gresham Cooke):One general point I should like to make is that is is not only those who personally approve of Mr. Smith who have given the illegal régime effective support and encouragement.Evidently.
I have here a letter from a young man who is about to get married to a Rhodesian girl who has been in this country for four and a half years, in other words, since before U.D.I. They are to be married in May, and the young man writes:My fiancée, who is a Rhodesian and has lived in this country for the last four and a half years, applied for a British passport in her married name as from the date of our wedding on 25th May in the proper way, but has been told that she can only have a six-months' temporary passport. Can you please find out why this case should be different to other aliens, especially as the passport she holds at the moment is a British passport marked 'Citizen of Rhodesia' and issued before U.D.I. She has been living in this country 1044 since before U.D.I. and should, therefore, be classed as a British citizen in her own right as a member of the Commonwealth, but she is not even being treated as well as an alien.That kind of thing wants some justification. So does the case which hon. Members will have seen on the front page of The Times today, where a boy of 11 had his passport taken away and documents which he ought to have had improperly removed. The mind boggles at the inconvenience to the 450 people who have now had their passports interfered with in one way or another.
The House will also want to know who else is on the list. Does any director who happens to have any commercial connection at all with Rhodesia in danger of having his passport taken away if he travels to any other part of the world? Is a shareholder who has money invested in a Rhodesian company in similar dangers? The right hon. Gentleman knows that there are dozens of British companies still operating in one way or another in Rhodesia, and if those enterprises were to stop the consequences to African employment and to many other aspects of life would be appalling. Are they not listed? According to the cases which I have quoted, they should be listed—according to the Government's criteria.
The truth is that there is no other conclusion than that this is becoming a hunt, a vendetta, and it has a dangerous and an ugly look. Does not the right hon. Gentleman see the trap into which he is being led? Speaking last Thursday, he allowed himself to use these words:There is no spite or pettiness or vindictiveness in this. Sir Frederic Crawford is in receipt of the pension to which he is entitled as a former Colonial Governor and that pension is still being paid to him."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 9th May, 1968; Vol. 764, c. 626.]I should hope so. But it is the most shocking revelation of the processes of thought in the mind of Her Majesty's Government that the right hon. Gentleman can even have thought of the pension in this connection. I hope that we will hear no more of that kind of thing.
However, on the evidence which I have quoted—I have no doubt that hon. Members will quote many more cases—that blacklist should go, and go now. The withholding of a passport concerns the 1045 prerogative, and hitherto that power to confiscate a passport or withhold the reason for doing so has been used with the utmost discretion by Governments over the years. I have had some experience of this and I do not think that I ever remember a case which was not either a case connected with security in relation to the Communist world—and there have been very few of these—or one in which the individual concerned might have been on bail, or something like that and, for his own protection, did not want reasons given.
There is nothing like that in this case. This blacklisting, therefore, whether or not it is connected with a United Nations resolution, is, in my view, an extension of the use of the prerogative which brings it to the point of an abuse of power.
Will the Commonwealth Secretary tell the House what offences against any law Sir Frederick has committed? The answer, as everyone in the House knows, is, "None." But he is the victim of insinuations which can damage his personal reputation and could damage his business career. This is guilt by association and it has the most sinister and ugly ring—
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home
No, I am not frightened, but the hon. Gentleman may be, one day, if he finds himself on one of the Government lists which are circulating.
The point which must be made to the Government, and it is a serious one, is that, if they persist in this course, and if they are to make lists and if they are to operate under a sort of blanket which covers hundreds of people to either issue or remove passports, there must be a redress in law. If the Government are to alter the old procedure and adopt a new, there must be a redress and an appeal in law. That, essentially, is the issue with which the House is concerned.
It is impossible to see how this action squares with the Government's intention 1046 to attract moderate opinion in Rhodesia, but I will not be drawn away into that issue. I am not concerned with that. The question which the House must ask is: are British subjects to be blacklisted by the British Government and lists circulated here and overseas, without giving any notice to those concerned, so that they may decide whether or not to set out on a journey, and without giving any reasons when their passports are taken away? Are those people to be condemned unheard, without any resort to the law?
I therefore ask the Commonwealth Secretary to return Sir Frederick's passport. Now, however, in view of the consequential revelations which have come to all hon. Members in the last few days, that is not enough. I ask him, also, to drop the blacklist, to put it crudely, to call off the hounds, because this is a hunt and is taking the form of a vendetta.
On the wider issue of the right to a passport, I would be inclined to think—probably most hon. Members would, on reflection, consider this to be so—that it is better that it should remain a prerogative act, that is, the issue and removal of passports, but, if the Government are to use the issue and impounding of passports on a considerable scale as an accompaniment to their international political policies, then the system will have to be changed and an appellate machinery in law will have to be provided.
I understand that the right hon. Gentleman has offered to return his passport to Sir Frederick under certain conditions, in other words, that Sir Frederick has to make a declaration. I very much doubt whether the right hon. Gentleman has any such power, but that will be a matter for examination later. But I would ask him to read that declaration to the House, and what he has asked of Sir Frederick. In Sir Frederick's view, I understand, it would make it impossible for him to return to and to live in Rhodesia, and it would positively force him to do what he has never done in his life, to take political sides. I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will, therefore, read the declaration.
But if he is going to ask Sir Frederick to make a declaration, it must not be confined to Sir Frederick alone. There cannot be one rule for Sir Frederick and another for all the people I have mentioned 1047 and the hundreds more who have been affected by the removal of passports—
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home
I think that even the hon. Member for Smethwick (Mr. Faulds) would agree that, if a rule is made for one, it should be for all, and that is what I am asking.
If Sir Frederick has to make a declaration, and the right hon. Gentleman wishes to make this a common practice, let him say so, so that everyone in Rhodesia and in this country knows exactly where he stands.
For all these reasons, we on these benches concluded that the Government's handling of this matter was a proper target for censure.
§ 3.59 p.m.
§ The Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs (Mr. George Thomson)
It might be for the convenience of the House if I were to inform hon. Members immediately of the developments this morning in the case of Sir Frederick Crawford's passport, to which the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) has just referred.
What I wish to do at this stage is to give the House as much information as possible about the decision in relation to Sir Frederick Crawford, which is the subject matter of the Opposition censure Motion. Then, with your permission, Mr. Speaker, and that of the House, I will try to answer at the end of the debate the various points and questions which the right hon. Gentleman has put on the more general issues, as well as the questions which I have no doubt will be raised by hon. Members on both sides about both our Rhodesian policy and our passport policy.
When I spoke on Thursday I undertook to listen very carefully to any further representations which Sir Frederick Crawford wished to make. Accordingly, I sent an invitation to Sir Frederick to talk with one of my senior advisers on Rhodesian policy. I considered very carefully the report of that interview, and as a result I agreed to see Sir Frederick Crawford myself this 1048 morning. My desire was to ensure, as far as I could, that no injustice was done in this case.
At this stage, I ought to tell the House more about the background to this case than I felt able to do last Thursday. I stated then that it had not been the practice under successive Governments to give reasons in the House for refusing or impounding a passport. I was assailed by one right hon. Gentleman after another from the Front Bench opposite for such "tyrannical" behaviour. They included the right hon. Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain Macleod), a former Colonial Secretary, and the right hon. Member for Stafford and Stone (Mr. Hugh Fraser), a former Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies, who was recorded in HANSARD as twice calling us on this side Fascists.
Perhaps both right hon. Gentlemen have forgotten the times when they had troubles not only in Rhodesia, but in Kenya. On 8th November, 1960, the right hon. Member for Enfield, West was asked by Mr. Fenner Brockway, now Lord Brockway, and by my hon. Friend now the Minister of State, Ministry of Technology, why he had impounded the passports of the deputy secretary-general of the Kenya African National Union, Mr. Ochwada, who is presently a Member of the Kenya National Assembly, and of Mr. Oginga Odinga, later a Minister of the Kenya Government and now Leader of the Opposition. [Interruption.] It is apparent that some hon. Members opposite have one standard for ex-colonial Governors and a different standard for ex-colonial peoples.
To these questions by my hon. Friends of the day, the right hon. Member for Enfield, West replied in these immortal but familiar words:It is not the practice of Governments to give reasons for action of this kind."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 8th November, 1960; Vol. 629, c. 29]I recognise the deep and legitimate anxieties held by many of my hon. Friends and, no doubt, by some hon. Members opposite, about Governmental action against passports without public reason given, but I hope that I have said enough to show that, whoever has the right to feel outraged about a reluctance to renal reasons, it is not right hon. Members opposite, who did exactly the 1049 same when they were in power. I remind the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire that, as Foreign Secretary, he had a particular responsibility for passport policy and, therefore, had a Governmental responsibility at the time when his right hon. Friend gave that answer on behalf of the Government.
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home
I conceded that I thought that action regarding passports, should remain an act of the prerogative, but never did any Government deprive 450 people of their passports under one blanket procedure.
§ Mr. Thomson
The right hon. Gentleman may now say that he is in favour of continuing this as an act of the prerogative. His right hon. Friend called it Fascism. His right hon. and learned Friend the Member for St. Marylebone (Mr. Hogg) called it the act of a police State.
Despite this background, the Opposition have chosen to make this matter the subject of a Motion of censure, and Sir Frederick Crawford felt it right—I do not dispute his action—to make his case against the Government's action in strong public terms. The reluctance of successive Governments to give reasons, though they have sometimes been given privately to individuals by successive Foreign Secretaries, has been based on the general rule that, although in an individual case there might be no particular objection to publication, the general working of the passport system would be made very difficult if reasons could not be refused in other cases in which valid objections did exist. Presumably, this is the basis on which the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire, from his experience, still endorses the use of the prerogative in this respect.
It was certainly in accordance with that general rule that I refused last week to give my reasons. But rules may have exceptions, and in the exceptional circumstances which have been deliberately created by the Opposition in putting down a Motion of censure, and in view of Sir 1050 Frederick Crawford's own public statements, I have come to the conclusion that it would be right for me to make an exception now. The Opposition have tabled a Motion of censure, the most serious Parliamentary act one can take, and the Government are entitled to defend themselves.
One factor which has sometimes led to the withholding of reasons has been a desire to protect the individual concerned from the giving of public reasons. There, also, I now feel justified in giving the House a fuller explanation than I did on Thursday. Indeed, I feel that I owe it to Sir Frederick Crawford and some of his associates to correct certain misconceptions which have appeared in the Press, and I gladly do so straight away, before we get into more heated areas of controversy.
There is no accusation against Sir Frederick Crawford of sanctions breaking, and I have made none. Nor was the Government's action aimed in any way at the Anglo-American Corporation, of which Sir Frederick is a director. The right hon. Gentleman has paid tribute to Sir Frederick's record as a distinguished former colonial Governor, and I gladly join him in that and in a tribute to the contribution which Sir Frederick made to the policies for African advance carried out by the party opposite when in power.
But Sir Frederick's status and eminence, and particularly his past rôle in relation to the Crown, give him a position of great influence and of especial responsibility inside Rhodesia. He, above all, could be expected to set an example in adherence to legality and loyalty to the Queen's representative in Rhodesia, Sir Humphrey Gibbs. I can only report to the House the facts as I know them. Sir Frederick has adopted, ever since U.D.I., a course of behaviour which certainly gave every appearance of lending full support to the claims of the régime to have achieved legality and independence. That is the basis of the reason on which instructions were given to withdraw his passport facilities. [Interruption.] I am trying to give the House information which it sought from me last Thursday.
Since the illegal declaration of independence Sir Frederick Crawford has refrained from signing the Government House book on occasions such as the 1051 Queen's Birthday. [Laughter.] I sometimes wonder whose side in the Rhodesian rebellion some hon. Members are on. They, perhaps, more than those of us on this side who did not have the advantages of their education and training are more familiar with what is meant by signing Government House books. Thousands of Rhodesians have made a practice, often a brave practice, of demonstrating their loyalty, through the Governor, by signing the book. As a former colonial Governor, Sir Frederick Crawford has had his own book in the past and well knows the significance of that gesture.
I might add that Sir Frederick no longer calls Sir Humphrey Gibbs, the Governor, "His Excellency" in ordinary speech in Rhodesia, but reserves the title for Mr. Dupont. I was wondering whether any hon. Members opposite would give support to that view. Sir Frederick has been active in promoting social and charitable occasions, innocuous in themselves and sometimes worthy, but used to promote the position of Mr. Dupont and Mr. Smith, who have been invited by Sir Frederick Crawford as guests of honour or as patrons of those occasions.
Sir Frederick's behaviour as President of the Bulawayo Trade Fair is only a particular example of a course of conduct which has certainly had the appearance of giving active support to the illegal regime. [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh."] This, I remind the House, is the test which the House accepted in 1966 as giving grounds for the withdrawal of passports. Thus, this was not a sudden, arbitrary action by the present Commonwealth Secretary last Thursday. It was a decision declared to the House and accepted by the House more than two years ago.
The House should understand that since the illegal declaration of independence it has been made the object of the Bulawayo Trade Fair to turn it into a propaganda weapon against the policy of sanctions. Sir Frederick, who must have known what he was doing, lent himself to this policy. The Fair's literature, issued with the President's authority, says that…with the advent of independence Rhodesia has become the greatest market potential in Africa…1052 In the same kind of literature, the 1966 Trade Fair was described as…the clarion call to the birth of a new nation—the Rhodesian nation".A significant step in the development of the Fair for propaganda purposes against sanctions was when in 1966, after the illegal declaration of independence, Sir Frederick invited Mr. Smith to open the Fair. In the circumstances, when the Governor had shortly before dismissed Mr. Smith from the Premiership, this invitation was a politically significant act. [HON. MEMBERS: "Shame."] This is clearly demonstrated by the fact that the Governor himself thought it necessary to resign his Vice-Presidency of the Fair. In welcoming Mr. Smith to the Fair, Sir Frederick Crawford boasted that…burdens placed on Rhodesia from abroad had not only failed but…had enabled Rhodesia…to enter new markets not hitherto thought of.In 1967, apparently unaffected by the Governor's resignation, it was Mr. Dupont whom Sir Frederick chose to invite to open the Fair and whom he formally welcomed. This May, immediately before coming to Britain, Sir Frederick was to be observed at the Fair as President busily taking the Duponts around and introducing Mr. Dupont to guests as "His Excellency."
I am bound to note, in the special circumstances in Rhodesia, that judges and many others holding high office have ostentatiously avoided being present at ceremonies where their presence would have accorded Mr. Dupont a status which he unlawfully claimed. Nevertheless, I do not underestimate the difficulties that the unprecedented situation in Rhodesia has created for people living there and it may well be that some do not recognise the significance of what they do.
It was against that background that, having considered what Sir Frederick said when he called at my Department last Friday, I thought it best to see him personally to satisfy myself whether his course of action had not been unthinking rather than deliberate. I accordingly invited him to see me, and I had half-an-hour's talk with him this morning.
I explained to Sir Frederick, as I have just done to the House, the reasons why his passport had been removed. I explained to him the facts I have given 1053 to the House in regard to sanctions-braking and Anglo-Rhodesian. I told him that if he could give me certain assurances about his attitude towards the Governor, on the one hand, and the illegal régime, on the other, I would be prepared to restore his passport to him.
The assurances for which I asked were these: I asked him to assure me that he regarded the Governor as the Queen's true and lawful representative in Rhodesia, and not Mr. Dupont, who claims to hold that position. I asked him to give me an assurance that he does not accept the illegal declaration of independence as valid nor Ian Smith and the other members of the régime as lawfully holding the offices which they have assumed. I asked him to give me his word that he would take care to conduct himself, particularly in respect of the various positions he holds in the public life of Rhodesia—[HON. MEMBERS: "Patronising".] I wish that hon. Gentlemen opposite would not dissent until they have listened to what I have to say. When I have reached the end of my remarks they can then decide if they wish to dissent.
I asked Sir Frederick to give me his word that he would take care to conduct himself, particularly in respect of the various positions which he holds in the public life of Rhodesia, in such a way as to give no impression that he regards or accepts Mr. Dupont or Mr. Smith and his colleagues as being entitled to the marks of recognition and respect that are customarily paid to lawfully constituted authorities—which, in Rhodesia, means to the Governor.
Sir Frederick told me that his initial reaction was that he could not give me these assurances. I asked him, because I was not anxious to rush him into making a decision, to take time to consider this. I have now heard from him—I heard just before this debate—that he cannot give me the assurances for which I asked.
There are, no doubt, many people in Rhodesia who are anxious to avoid becoming involved in the grave political problems of the country in which they are living. But as I have explained to the House, Sir Frederick's whole course of action since the illegal declaration of independence has been such as to throw the whole weight of his influence on the side of illegal régime. He told me 1054 that he wished to remain neutral in the present Rhodesian situation. I do not believe that this is the right posture for a man in his position to adopt; and, in any case, I cannot accept that he has, in fact, remained neutral. He has given positive support to the members of the régime. The only way he can cancel that out is by giving the kind of undertakings for which I asked.
I assure the House—and I hope that right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite will accept this—that I tried to draft these undertakings in a way that would make it as easy as possible to regain the position of detachment that he professes to wish to occupy. I really do not think that a simple affirmation of basic loyalties should present so much difficulty. I do not know on what authority the right hon. Gentleman referred to this matter—when he said that he thought that it was an unreasonable demand on Sir Frederick to ask him to make a political affirmation—for this was not a political declaration, still less a request for support for the present British Government.
Sir Frederick has claimed that his loyalty lies to the Queen. In Rhodesia today that statement can be made good in one way, and in one way only, namely, by a simple demonstration of respect and support for Her Majesty's lawful and undoubted representative, Sir Humphrey Gibbs, coupled with the avoidance of demonstrations of respect and recognition for the usurping régime.
To put it as charitably as I can, Sir Frederick apparently feels that the pressures on him in Rhodesia to conform with the illegal régime are too great to be resisted. Others have found it possible to do so. I recognise that those pressures are real, but I might add that surely those pressures inside Rhodesia, which we all try to comprehend from far away, did not compel Sir Frederick to attend a reception here in London last November in honour—if that is the right word—of the second anniversary of the illegal declaration of independence.
As Sir Frederick must have expected, his attendance was well publicised in Rhodesia, and, once again, his eminence in the life of Rhodesia gave his action an importance that would not have attached to the attendance of others, even of certain right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite. Sir Frederick's decision has 1055 forced me to conclude that there are no grounds for altering the decision that he is one of the régime's active supporters.
The arguments about passport policy and other matters I will, with the permission of the House, leave to later. In our society in this country we have our basic loyalties in common and we do not need to place any undue importance in the outward formalities of address. But in the state in which Rhodesia now finds itself, they are the sign of where one's loyalties lie. A heavy burden rests on Rhodesians in high places as to whether they remain loyal to the lonely but brave Governor in his dignified isolation, or giving in to the pressures of those who have usurped legal rule. Those in Rhodesia who have stood by the Governor support our action over this passport. I only wish that it were the same on both sides of this House.
§ 4.20 p.m
§ Mr. Sandys (Streatham)
The Commonwealth Secretary's speech has confirmed how right and necessary it was for the Opposition to table this Motion of censure today. The right hon. Gentleman has given the House a totally inadequate explanation of the Government's reasons for their action in this case, and we are still left completely in the dark with regard to their general policy on the withdrawal of passports.
§ Mr. Sandys
As my right hon. Friend the Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) said, this stinks of a vendetta. My right hon. and learned Friend the Member for St. Marylebone (Mr. Hogg) the other day was criticised for saying that this was like the action of a police State. But when we heard the declaration which the Commonwealth Secretary tried to dictate to Sir Frederick Crawford this morning as a condition for returning his passport, which is the normal right of every citizen of this country without having to sign pieces of paper, all I can say is that it was very reminiscent of the confessions with which we are so familiar in totalitarian countries.
§ Mr. George Thomson
Will the right hon. Gentleman allow me to clarify one 1056 point? I asked Sir Frederick Crawford to sign no piece of paper. I merely asked him to allow me to tell the House that he had given me verbally these assurances.
§ Mr. Sandys
It was hardly worth the right hon. Gentleman intervening to say that. What is the difference between signing a piece of paper, which perhaps might have remained private, and the right hon. Gentleman getting up and saying, "I have been authorised by Sir Frederick Crawford to make the following climb-down"? That is unworthy of the right hon. Gentleman.
§ Mr. George Brown (Belper)
Forgive me, one moment. If I understand, Sir Frederick Crawford, an ex-colonial Governor, was asked by the Secretary of State to allow the Secretary of State to tell the House that he was loyal to the Queen's lawful and only representative in Rhodesia. Will the right hon. Gentleman tell the House why he thinks that was such an outrageous request?
§ Mr. Sandys
First of all, a declaration of that kind, given in the present circumstances, would have amounted to Sir Frederick Crawford saying that he had not behaved in a manner which was consistent with his loyalty to the Crown, and that he had now been brought to book by the Secretary of State. It could have no other possible interpretation.
§ Mr. Sandys
My other objection to what I regard as the high-handed attitude of the Commonwealth Secretary is, as I said before, that the issue of a passport is a normal right of ordinary citizens in this country, and it is an entire innovation, and a very offensive one, to ask people to make declarations, or to authorise Ministers to make declarations 1057 on their behalf, before they are allowed to have a passport.
The withdrawal of Sir Frederick Crawford's passport was, in my view, a senseless act of petty vindictiveness. Frustrated in their hopes of bringing down the Smith Administration by economic pressure, the Government have tried to work off their spite and their spleen by persecuting individuals. There is nothing which the right hon. Gentleman has told us this afternoon which in any way in the slightest degree justifies the action which the Government have taken.
As has been said, Sir Frederick Crawford had a distinguished record of service to the Crown. While he was Governor of Uganda, and since he went to live in Rhodesia, he has shown a fair-minded approach to people of all races. It is well known that he was opposed to U.D.I. and that since then he has done everything he could within his sphere—
§ Mr. Sandys
When British visitors to Salisbury have been to see him he has helped to make arrangements for them to meet not only members of the Smith Government, but also Africans of every shade of political opinion.
The Commonwealth Secretary said that Sir Frederick Crawford had appeared to lend support to the Smith regime. As an example, he said that he had not signed the Governor's visitors' book. Was the right hon. Gentleman so hard up for an explanation of what he had done that he had to advance a flimsy argument of that kind?
§ Mr. Sandys
The right hon. Gentleman should be ashamed, in a debate of this kind, to have to bring forward a triviality like that. It only shows how thin is his case.
As a prominent member of an important international company, naturally, 1058 Sir Frederick Crawford has to maintain close contact and good relations with the de facto Government.
§ Mr. Sandys
It is the de facto Government. It is the Government which is governing Rhodesia, and people who are conducting business have to deal with realities even though the hon. Member likes to live up in the clouds.
Civil servants, the police and others in official positions when U.D.I. occurred were given certain advice by the Attorney-General. It is, I think, significant that they were not told by the British Government that it was their duty to give up their posts and stop working for the Rhodesian Government. It was left to their discretion as to where their duty lay, and how they should act. That was the only possible advice which any British Government could give in the circumstances. In fact most of them carried on and did their jobs under the Government.
Sir Frederick Crawford, who has no official position, was, I suggest, entitled to the same latitude as officials and others to carry on his normal business. I submit that that is all that he has done. This is a simple question of justice. The action of the Government is cowardly and oppressive. Anyone who believes in freedom and fair play must condemn them for their contemptible behaviour.
§ Mr. Faulds
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. We have been forced to listen to the right hon. Gentleman's speech. Would it not now be honourable of him to tell us what convictions forced him, however reluctantly, to attend the anniversary celebrations in Southern Rhodesia House last November?
§ Mr. Speaker
Order. The hon. Member for Smethwick (Mr. Faulds) must contain himself. Mr. Bottomley.
§ 4.30 p.m.
§ Mr. Arthur Bottomley (Middlesbrough, East)
The right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) will not expect me to agree with the contents of his speech, but at least it was couched in civil tones, which is more than can be said about what happened at Question Time last week. I tried unsuccessfully to ask a Question, and I am bound to say that I am still resentful of the language used by right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite who made accusations to the effect that those of us who supported loyally the Constitution and the traditional practice of British behaviour should be called Fascists. Even at this hour, I would appeal to my colleagues who used that language to consider now whether they ought not to apologise.
I agree with what the right hon. Gentleman said at one stage of his speech. I am sorry that those of us who were in office in the past—his own Government and ours—did not give more serious thought to some redress by law by way of appeal when action was taken such as that necessitating the withdrawal of a man's passport. There are times when it is in the public interest that matters of this kind should not be disclosed. But I appeal not merely to this side of the House, but to all hon. Members to consider whether we ought not to look at this in a way in which there can be seen to be complete fairness, and not endeavour to do anything but right by any standard.
In last week's Sunday Telegraph, the leading article said:It will…not be enough for the British Opposition, in Tuesday's debate, to put to the selective spite that has led to the impounding of Sir Frederick's passport. They should 'come clean' at last and declare their opposition to sanctions of any kind.The fact is that many right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite have not "come clean" on this matter. A bipartisan policy on the application of economic sanctions would, in my judgment, have brought down the illegal regime in Rhodesia before now. The Governor of Rhodesia appealed to me at the beginning to see that there was a full and 1060 effective application of economic sanctions. Many leaders of business did the same, and they appealed to right hon and hon. Gentlemen opposite in similar terms. It was not possible to do that and, as Commonwealth Secretary, I had to appeal to the House in a piecemeal fashion to give the Government powers to apply economic sanctions. I had to introduce a number of Orders, and one of them, in 1966, provided that British nationals who supported the illegal régime would not be granted full British passport facilities, but, instead, would be givendocumentation for their return to Rhodesia.We have gone further now. A resolution has been tabled for the United Nations Security Council stating that British nationals should be prevented from undertaking any activitieswhich promote or are calculated to promote the export of any commodities or products from Southern Rhodesia.Can anyone deny that Sir Frederick is a British national, that his company is the Anglo-American Corporation, and that this Corporation is investing heavily in Rhodesia? It is investing in a nickel mine which is to produce goods for export. Sir Frederick is clearly the resident director in Rhodesia responsible for an operation calculated to promote exports.
§ Mr. Richard Sharples (Sutton and Cheam)
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that, as I understand it, not a penny of that money being invested in the nickel mine comes from outside Rhodesia?
§ Mr. Bottomley
The point that I was making is that it is promoting exports, and we have said in a resolution before the United Nations that any British national engaged in any kind of activity calculated to promote exports will be prevented from doing so.
§ Mr. Bottomley
As I have said, Sir Frederick is clearly the resident director in Rhodesia responsible for the operation and, if we take no steps to discourage this kind of activity, the United Nations 1061 will, in justification, have doubts about our ability and our intention to pursue a policy designed to bring the rebellion in Rhodesia to a peaceful end. It will also have the effect of encouraging those in Rhodesia who believe in violence and force to go further ahead in suggesting that sort of action.
I was very disappointed last night when I met a missionary from Rhodesia who told me that many of the liberal Africans who until now have wanted to secure a change in Rhodesia by peaceful means, are now turning aside and saying that the only way in which they can achieve it is by violence.
I have a high personal regard for the services of Sir Frederick as a distinguished ex-colonial civil servant, but I would put it to him whether he considers conscientiously that his present behaviour is in keeping with the high traditions of that Service. In fact, he is engaged actively in giving support to the illegal régime. As an ex-Governor himself, I wonder whether he has had a moment to think of the feelings of that loyal and devoted servant, the Governor, Sir Humphrey Gibbs?
What about the man to whom he pays homage, Mr. Dupont? He is one of the prime instigators of the police State in Rhodesia. It would have given me much pleasure to have been able to say that I have heard Sir Frederick's voice condemning actively and in a resounding manner those who practise the kind of operation which encourages a system like the one in Rhodesia at the moment.
I would like to refer briefly to the way in which those in Rhodesia are suffering today. We ought to spare a thought for them. I am not just talking of passports being taken away. I am referring to the treatment of persons detained without trial. I am thinking of people like the Rev. Sithole and Joshua Nkomo, men whom I know personally and who wanted to bring about a situation in Rhodesia where liberty would prevail and where Europeans would have as much right to live as Africans. The present illegal régime in Rhodesia is making this impossible.
Under the system, there are severe penalties for offences which, to us, are 1062 trivial. Police dogs are used against African nationals—
§ Mr. Bottomley
It would encourage me if I could hear those who argue for liberty doing as much to call attention to this sort of behaviour as they are to the need to put down this censure Motion against the Government.
There is a notorious law in Rhodesia, the Rhodesia Law and Maintenance Act, which makes hanging possible for acts of so-called murder. I should think that it should be at this time necessary for us all to be stronger in our application to bring down the illegal régime. The tobacco farmers, who were the backbone of the Rhodesian Front, are in revolt, the drought is much more effective and damaging than we are led to believe. With extra pressure we all ought to join in putting on, it is possible to end the illegal régime in Rhodesia.
I should feel much happier if all hon. Members, on both sides of the House, were making it the major objective to secure the return to standards of law and order and civilised behaviour which is the British heritage—
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home
The right hon. Gentleman is a very fine and fair-minded man. Would he refer to some of the other cases of passports being withdrawn, in which passports have been taken away from children and from Mr. Harper? What about them?
§ Mr. Bottomley
I thought that I had gone a long way to meet the point made by the right hon. Gentleman when I made the appeal both to his colleagues, as well as my colleagues, to consider whether there ought not to be some redress by appeal. If that were so we need not be concerned about individual cases in the way in which they have been highlighted today.
I say this finally, because this is a short debate, although much more could be said. I believe in the best interests of the people of Rhodesia as a whole. For the good and high standards which this House practises we should say to all people of British stock—that goes for Sir Frederick, too—that they should stand by the standards of liberty and conduct 1063 which is the right and tradition of a British holder of a passport.
§ 4.42 p.m.
§ Mr. John Boyd-Carpenter (Kingston-upon-Thames)
I hope that the Commonwealth Secretary will take it as a compliment, because it is sincerely so intended, when I say that to many of us the shock of his announcement came the more sharply because it came from him. During the period in which he has held his extremely difficult office he has certainly given many of us the impression both of good sense and sensibility. Therefore, the fact that he should be Ministerially responsible for an action whose malevolent ineptitude clearly suggests personal intervention by the Prime Minister comes as a shock. It also comes as more of a shock that the right hon. Gentleman should this afternoon seek to justify his action by the sort of speech he made.
We are not trying Sir Frederick Crawford for whether or not—in a position of singular difficulty which hon. Members should thank their stars they have not themselves to occupy—in trying in the difficult situation in Rhodesia to administer in the interests of its shareholders a great international company, he has acted as we would approve. We are not concerned this afternoon about whether he has picked precisely the right path. Opinions may well differ on that. What shocked me was that the Commonwealth Secretary did not seem to appreciate that. What is shocking is that he should be punished for this action in this way.
Make no bones about it, this action of withdrawing Sir Frederick's passport is intended as a penalty and a punishment. And for a director of a great international company it is a very severe punishment. I know the legal pedantries, to quote my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for St. Marylebone (Mr. Hogg), about this being a prerogative act. The right hon. Gentleman knows that passports in general are withhold only to prevent someone going abroad. That is not so in this case, because the right hon. Gentleman, in his statement on Thursday, said that he would provide the necessary papers to enable Sir Frederick to go back to 1064 Rhodesia. It is, therefore, quite clear that this is a punishment.
Opinions may differ, on the facts in front of us, as to whether what Sir Frederick is alleged to have done, whether his failure to sign His Excellency's book, whether civilities shown to a guest at a trade fair of which he had been President for six years were right or wrong, but I think that no one in this House could justify for a moment the methods of imposing this penalty. If Sir Frederick has committed an offence against the law, let the right hon. Gentleman put him in front of a court.
If he did that Sir Frederick would have to face precisely formulated charges and clear evidence and he would have the right to be heard—and to be heard at the time, not four days after the decision is taken against him. If he has committed an offence, why does the right hon. Gentleman, who has taken great powers under the Rhodesia Act, not put him on a charge? The right hon. Gentleman knows that Sir Frederick has committed no offence. He is seeking, none the less, to use the old prerogative power in respect of passports to punish him.
Whatever view one takes of the way in which Sir Frederick has conducted himself, that any man, distinguished or obscure, eminent or unknown, should be punished in this way, not by a court of law acting judicially with rights of appeal and in accordance with procedures which are known to the law, but arbitrarily by a political Minister acting on the basis of unpublished lists and unpublished decisions and unknown considerations, seems absolutely intolerable.
What seems worse is that the right hon. Gentleman in his reply to my right hon. Friend the Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) did not address himself to this point at all. The right hon. Gentleman has told us that he proposes to seek the leave of the House to reply at the end of the debate. I hope that in fairness to himself he will tell the House then why he thinks it right to punish in this way a man whom he admits to be guiltless of any legal offence whatever.
§ Mr. Manuel
Could the right hon. Gentleman explain why he is so scathing in his condemnation of my right hon. 1065 Friend for withdrawing the passport, but did not condemn his right hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain Macleod), who did the very same thing?
§ Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
The hon. Gentleman will be aware, if he has studied that case with the closeness which I know he always does, that the withdrawal of the passport in the case of the certain gentlemen concerned was a precaution necessary for law and order and in circumstances which might well have been the preliminary to criminal proceedings. Nobody believes that the right of Sir Frederick Crawford to travel to Rhodesia could have this effect because the right hon. Gentleman has said that he will provide the documents to enable him to go back there. No one believes that his right to travel in other countries is a threat to law and order, nor has the right hon. Gentleman indicated that there are the slightest reasons for seeking to put him on any criminal charge. That is the essence of the case against the right hon. Gentleman.
I do not want to pronounce on how someone in Rhodesia should conduct himself, but the censure by the right hon. Gentleman of those who show even trifling civilities to what, however illegal, is the de facto régime contrasts very vividly with the advice the Prime Minister gave the public services of that country immediately after U.D.I. Does the right hon. Gentleman recall that the Prime Minister said on 11th November, 1965:It is our view—as I have said; and I believe that the Governor has made this statement in Rhodesia—that it is the duty of public servants to carry on with their jobs…He went on to say:I hope that those who are concerned with, say, hospital administration, education, and the normal functioning of Government will feel able to carry on…".—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 11th November, 1965; Vol. 720, c. 362.]
§ Mr. Michael Foot (Ebbw Vale)
Did the advice of the Prime Minister on that occasion to officials and other people in Rhodesia include a suggestion that they should on all available opportunities lick the boots of Mr. Dupont?
§ Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
If the hon. Gentleman has any experience, and I think he has, of public administration, he will realise that it is difficult to carry on in a subordinate capacity in Govern- 1066 ment if one insists on publicly insulting one's superiors. The hon. Gentleman will know perfectly well that one cannot either run a business or, still more, act in a subordinate official capacity unless one is prepared to indulge in those minor courtesies to one's superiors which are the ordinary lubricant of life. The hon. Gentleman knows that perfectly well.
There was one other omission from the right hon. Gentleman's speech. My right hon. Friend asked him about the other cases and said that there were some hundreds of them. On what grounds is the right hon. Gentleman seeking to punish—because I am sure it is so—these people, too? Is it for the same sort of triviality? Is it for the same sort of thing for which he admits he cannot put them on trial before a court of law to face any charge, and is he, for that reason, asking foreign Powers to use their officials to take British passports off British citizens travelling in their country? The right hon. Gentleman is not going to part from this House without telling it a great more about that.
My final point—and this is why I am particularly glad that my right hon. Friend raised this matter—is that the whole atmosphere of this action, with the right hon. Gentleman of all Ministers put up to seek to justify it, not only reeks of malice but stinks of tyranny. For a Government to say that they will punish those who have acted lawfully in the eyes of the law because they have displeased the Government, that they will punish severely political opinions and private actions which are nowhere near a criminal offence, suggests to me that it is not only in Germany that we need fear the uprising of the Nazi spirit.
§ 4.25 p.m.
§ Sir Dingle Foot (Ipswich)
The speech to which the House has just listened from the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Kingston-upon-Thames, (Mr. Boyd-Carpenter) illustrates precisely the point that was made by my right hon. Friend the Member for Middlesbrough, East (Mr. Bottomley). The right hon. Gentleman was extremely indignant about the invasion of personal liberty which, he says, was involved in the exercise of the Royal prerogative in the case of Sir Frederick Crawford. He made no reference whatever to the invasion of every kind of civil liberty in Southern Rhodesia.
§ Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
If the right hon. and learned Gentleman will consult the Motion he will see that it relates to Sir Frederick Crawford. If he has ever heard me speak in a debate on Rhodesia he will know that I have made no defence of any invasions of civil liberty there, but I hope that I am not now committing an offence in being relevant and in order.
§ Sir Dingle Foot
The right hon. Gentleman said he had made no defence of any invasion of liberty. Has he or have his colleagues ever attacked it?
Take the case of an African leader who represents far more people than does Mr. Smith, Mr. Joshua Nkomo. Mr. Nkomo, who was charged with an offence and was acquitted by a court of law has been detained in a distant detention camp ever since, for the past four years. How rarely, if ever, do we hear any condemnation of that. Hon. Gentlemen are very concerned when an ex-Governor, for whom I have the highest personal regard, has his passport taken away. They never exhibit the slightest concern when the real leaders of the Rhodesian people are locked away, when the right of public meeting is denied and when the whole country lives in fear of intimidation because of the powers to lock up without trial.
Since this matter was raised last week, two issues have been canvassed, both in this House and outside. I want to say a word very briefly about each. The first is whether it is right that a passport should be refused or taken away by the mere ipse dixit of the Executive and that the subject should have no right of appeal or redress. Secondly, there is the question whether the power should have been exercised in this particular case.
We find ourselves here in what has become a very familiar situation. It has become familiar over the past 3½ years, ever since the present Government assumed office. We constantly find hon. Members opposite expressing great concern at a state of affairs which they did nothing to correct over 13 years and which indeed they accepted and defended when they were in office.
Last Thursday we heard the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for St. Marylebone (Mr. Hogg), who is an 1068 expert in selective indignation, ask whether there was notonce a time in this country when a man was innocent until proved guilty.and he went on to ask my right hon. Friend the Member for Derby, South (Mr. Philip Noel-Baker):Will he also point out to the right hon. Gentleman that the refusal to publish any reasons, however much this may be said to be in the public interest, is to reduce this country to the level of a police State?"—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 9th May 1968; vol. 764, c. 628.]That was the general proposition.
This question of the issue, withholding or impounding of passports has been considered on a number of occasions during recent years. It was considered, for example, in another place on 16th June, 1958. When I looked up the debate I also looked up the membership of the Government in that other place. I found that it included the right hon. Gentleman who was then Lord Hailsham and the Lord President of the Council. There was also the right hon. Gentleman who now sits for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home), who was there as Commonwealth Secretary. On that occasion the precise point was raised. Viscount Stansgate asked this question:To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the protection afforded by the possession of a valid British passport is the normal right of a British-born subject either in the United Kingdom or the Colonies; and for what, if any, reasons it is held that a passport can be withheld or withdrawn?The then Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, in the presence of the right hon. Gentleman who now represents Kinross and West Perthshire and who intervened in the exchanges on that occasion, said:No British subject has a legal right to a passport. The grant of a United Kingdom passport is a Royal prerogative exercised through Her Majesty's Ministers and, in particular, the Foreign Secretary.The Foreign Secretary has the power to withhold or withdraw a passport at his discretion, although in practice such power is exercised only very rarely and in very exceptional cases.and went on to describe some of the categories of cases in which this power was exercised.
The same thought which crossed the mind of the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for St. Marylebone last week obviously crossed the mind 1069 of their Lordships, because Lord Strabolgi said:how, in that case, can you find a man guilty unless you try him?The reply on that occasion by the Earl of Gosford, in the presence no doubt of the right hon. Gentleman, was:My Lords, there is no suggestion of guilt in the withdrawal of a passport, the issue of which is a Royal prerogative."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, House of Lords, 16th June, 1958; Vol. 209, c. 860–861.]There was no suggestion then from either of the right hon. Gentlemen—
§ Mr. Quintin Hogg (St. Marylebone)
If the right hon. and learned Gentleman is proceeding from that, can he not hoist it in that what is objected to is a use of the prerogative as a punishment, without trial, and not the use of it as a protection.
§ Sir Dingle Foot
That was not the right hon. and learned Gentleman's point last week. He suggested that the use of the Royal prerogative without giving the man an opportunity to be heard or telling him the grounds was a grave invasion of liberty. Precisely this issue was raised, presumably in the presence of the right hon. and learned Member and of the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire, in the case to which I have referred. Not only was the system accepted by them. It was never suggested, by them at any rate, that any change was desirable.
Of course such cases happened in those days. My right hon. Friend has given examples in Kenya in 1960. It happened not infrequently that passports were withdrawn for political reasons—not often, of course, in this country. But it did often happen in colonial and dependent territories and from time to time the matter was raised in this House, but never, I am sure, by any right hon. or hon. Member opposite. I can give a number of examples, some of which I raised myself. I will content myself with one.
In November, 1956, there was being held a Socialist conference in Bombay, to which delegates were asked from different countries in the Afro-Asian world. Three African delegates were invited to attend. One was from what was then Nyasaland, one was from what was then Northern Rhodesia and one was from Uganda. It could not have been an accident that all three of them in their 1070 three different territories were refused passports to proceed to that conference.
Protests were made in this House. I raised one myself. It was all, of course, without the slightest avail. Therefore, in the following year I introduced a Bill on the subject. It was called the Immigation and Passports Bill. I suggested that, if anyone was declared a prohibited immigrant by any Government in a British colonial or dependent territory, whenever his passport was withheld or withdrawn, there should be a right of recourse to an advisory committee, where he would have the chance to state his case and of knowing what was alleged against him. I got leave to introduce that Bill and that, of course, was as far as it went because, according to procedures which we all know, it was always blocked by an hon. Member from the party opposite.
But the matter was raised again in a different context. Later the same year, we had the Tribunals and Inquiries Act. Some of us then in opposition felt that that Measure did not go nearly far enough to protect the liberties of the subject. We thought that there should be a further safeguard. That safeguard has, in fact, now been given by the present Government in setting up the office of Parliamentary Commissioner—something which the last Government refused to do. In debate on the Tribunals and Inquiries Act, two of us, Sir Frank Soskice, as he then was, and I, drew specific attention to the questiton of passports and of their being arbitrarily withdrawn without any reason being given or without the person concerned even being heard by the other party involved.
In this matter, as in others, Labour Members of Parliament have shown themselves far more concerned with the liberty of the subject than have hon. Members opposite. Let them search the records. They will find not one single case in all these years when the Conservative Party was in office when any hon. Member opposite every expressed the slightest concern about the arbitrary refusal or withdrawal of a passport. Yet that was going on and their attention was constantly directed to it.
I have put down an Amendment to the Motion before the House, which is not being called, but I will express my view that the question of passports ought 1071 now to be reviewed. Originally, the passport was simply a facility. It made it easier to travel. Now the passport has become something almost different. It has become, in certain circumstances, almost an instrument of despotism, because it can be granted or withheld. For example, the South African Government would not allow Chief Lutholi a passport even to travel abroad to get the Nobel Peace Prize. That is a police State.
The point I make is that the passport has become something very different from what is was in earlier days because, although one can leave this country without a passport and is entitled to return to it without one, one will not get very far. Therefore, if a passport is refused or taken away, there should be a right of recourse to an advisory committee or some other independent authority.
I come now to the case of Sir Frederick Crawford. I want fully to join in the tributes paid to his career of public service. I have known him for many years. In the days when he was Governor of Uganda I frequently met him on a variety of occasions in Entebbe and London. When he was first appointed Governor of Uganda, he was regarded by many of the African population with considerable suspicion because he had come from Kenya, where he was Deputy-Governor during the Mau Mau emergency. That suspicion very rapidly passed away and it should be recorded that Sir Frederick went a long way to repair in Uganda the damage which had been done a year or two earlier by the act of incredible high-handedness and folly when the Conservative Government exiled the Kabaka of Buganda—something which no one would defend now, although, of course, all hon. Members opposite supported it at the time.
But the fact that Sir Frederick Crawford is a man of great distinction with an admirable record does not mean that he should be afforded more favourable treatment than anyone else. He should be setting an example. When one hears about the Rhodesian Trade Fair and sees the photograph published in a newspaper last Sunday, showing him appearing with the head of the illegal régime receiving the guests together, that must be interpreted as a gesture of sympathy with the unlawful régime.
1072 Again, only a day or two ago, Sir Frederick was asked questions on the radio. Referring to the Trade Fair, he said:…there were Cabinet Ministers there, the Officer administering the Government, Mr. Dupont, our Prime Minister and Mrs. Smith…I call attention to the phrase, "our Prime Minister". However distinguished they may be, those who, on public occasions, appear to give countenance to the Queen's enemies cannot complain if they are prevented from travelling about the world on British passports.
But there is rather more than that involved. There is a matter of general policy. In dealing with the Rhodesian question, I have no doubt about the intentions of Her Majesty's Government, but that confidence is not universally shared, particularly throughout the Afro-Asian countries. It is sometimes suspected, however unjustly, that we are not in earnest in seeking to bring about an end to the rebellion in Rhodesia. It is because of that feeling and because we wish to make sanctions more effective that there has been placed before the Security Council, for early debate, a new resolution on behalf of Her Majesty's Government.
This refers to persons travelling on Southern Rhodesian passports and demands that all nations should refuse to recognise those passports. It goes on to urge members of the United NationsTake all possible measures to prevent the entry into their territories of persons whom they have reason to believe to be ordinarily resident in Southern Rhodesia and whom they have reason to believe to have furthered or encouraged or to be likely to further or encourage the unlawful actions of the illegal régime in Southern Rhodesia or any activities which are calculated to evade any measures decided upon in this resolution…or in an earlier resolution.
If we are to ask other nations to exercise their judgment in individual cases, we must exercise our own judgment. We have to give a lead. I believe that this resolution is long overdue. It is a fantastic state of affairs that when there is a rebellion against the Crown anybody can buy an airline ticket from this country to Salisbury and back again, or that travel facilities for all the people concerned should be freely available to the outside world.
§ Sir Alec Douglas-Home
Does not the right hon. and learned Gentleman think, if he recommends these things, that the Government should lay down rules, so that people know exactly what they should and should not do and are not caught in a foreign country and unable to move?
§ Sir Dingle Foot
I should have thought that the rules were clear enough, without being spelled out, that if somebody goes out of his way to express by word or gesture sympathy with the unlawful régime he comes within the rules. I should not have thought that that presented any difficulty. I do not, however, disagree with the right hon. Gentleman. The more clearly this can be spelled out, the better, and if it is spelled out quite clearly some advantage will have been gained from this Motion.
I believe that a very heavy responsibility rests on right hon. Gentlemen on the Opposition Front Bench, including the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire. Throughout the past months they have constantly painted in this country a wholly false picture of the Rhodesian situation. When the right hon. Gentleman returned from Salisbury a few weeks ago he wrote an article in a Sunday newspaper in which he said:Rhodesia is a country in which it is possible to establish a non-racial society on the Continent of Africa.On the face of it, that is a quite unexceptionable statement. But what did he mean? He meant that it was possible to establish a non-racial society by agreement with the Smith régime.
That is a sheer illusion. I shall not go over all the steps again—the Law and Order Maintenance Act, which caused Sir Robert Tredgold to resign, the suppression of public meetings, the locking-up of African leaders, the abolition of almost every form of civil liberty—but shall refer simply to an article by Mr. Ian Waller, in last Sunday's Sunday Telegraph. He referred to a conversation he had with Mr. Smith and said, after mentioning the régime's economic difficulties:I believe it was his desire to break out of what, in the long run, is the road to ruin, that drove Mr. Smith, when I interviewed him, to state what he has never said so categorically before: 'No majority rule for a hundred years.'1074 There spoke the true voice of the Rhodesian Front. Every attempt at negotiation has broken down at the same point, whether the previous Government or this Government were concerned. When the point arose where they had to contemplate the transfer of power in any degree to the African majority the negotiations came to an end.
At the end of the article Mr. Waller referred to a further interview he had with Sir Robert Tredgold, who does not give support to the régime. He said:It was Sir Robert Tredgold, the former Chief Justice of Rhodesia, who put his country's dilemma most clearly to me. He asked: 'Are the Africans being given the hope and expectation of reasonable political advancement without resort to revolutionary means?' His answer was a resounding 'no', and he left me in no doubt what he thought the consequences would be if Rhodesia's political leaders refused this advancement.If those consequences are realised, a very large part of the responsibility will rest on right hon. Gentlemen on the Front Bench opposite.
§ 5.12 p.m.
§ Mr. David Steel (Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles)
I very much welcome the opportunity of following the right hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot). I intend to be brief and keep very much within the strict limits of the Motion. I shall not try to deal with the wider issues, although I wholly agree with what the right hon. and learned Gentleman said.
I and my colleagues who were present in the Chamber last Thursday afternoon were greatly troubled after the exchanges with the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Affairs. We were very disturbed that this arbitrary action had been taken and that, apparently, no reasons could be given for it and that no appeal machinery existed. I therefore put down a Question, which was answered in a Written Reply yesterday, to find out on how many occasions since 1951 passports of British citizens have been impounded. The Answer was 2,400. If anything, this deepened my concern that we have apparently allowed this procedure to go on year after year.
The fact that the Secretary of State was able to demonstrate quite adequately in his speech today that the procedure had been adopted by his Conservative predecessors in Ministerial office made no difference to our view of the unfortunate 1075 nature of the procedure which has been used by successive Governments. I hope that, if nothing else comes from this debate, we shall at least hear from the right hon. Gentleman that considerable thought has been applied to the machinery whereby we impound people's passports arbitrarily without necessarily giving reasons. After all, not every one will be an ex-colonial Governor, the reasons for impounding whose passport may well be discussed on the Floor of the House.
I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will consider an appeal procedure. One which might be appropriate was that used during the war in the case of British citizens detained under Regulation 18B, under which, if I remember rightly, they had a right of appeal to a panel of persons of judicial standing, and though this appeal, for obvious reasons, was held in private—
§ Mr. Steel
If it were purely advisory, I agree that it would not be sufficiently strong machinery to deal with the problem.
An appeal machinery of this kind, clearly cannot be an ordinary appeal before the courts, because possibly on occasions the standard of evidence required would not stand up in an open court of law, or on occasions where matters of security were involved it would not be in the country's interest for the evidence to be brought out in open court. A special kind of machinery must be adopted. I hope that as a result of this episode the Government will be willing to consider this, and that in future we shall have some form of machinery known to everybody and to which everybody can have resort if their passports are taken away.
We had two doubts on the Government's action in this matter. The first was that no reasons had been given. That doubt has been removed this afternoon, because the Commonwealth Secretary gave us the reasons quite clearly, and it 1076 is open to the House and the general public to agree or disagree with the Government on the merits of the case. At least the reasons have been given and, therefore, our doubts on that score have been removed.
The second reason for doubt as to whether we should support the Government tonight was the fact that no appeal procedure existed, but I must point out to the Opposition that there is no mention of this in their Motion. They are dealing strictly with the narrow question whether or not, on the existing procedure, the Government were right or wrong to remove Sir Frederick's passport.
I now turn to that question. The Government's action was taken under a policy which was agreed and made clear in the House after U.D.I. It was accepted on both sides of the House that it could well be that as part of the sanctions policy people would have their passports removed. The three instances which the Commonwealth Secretary gave us this afternoon seemed to me to be reasonable grounds on which we could suppose that Sir Frederick Crawford was giving aid and comfort to the illegal régime, the first being that he acted as host to the Prime Minister, to Mr. Smith. I must say that other people have acted as host to Mr. Smith, including our own Prime Minister, so that, though that reason could be adduced, it did not strike me as overwhelming.
Far more important and serious is the fact that Sir Frederick Crawford acted as host the following year to Mr. Dupont. Had he been an ordinary businessman unused to the etiquette of diplomacy or to moving in circles associated with the subtleties of loyalty to the Queen and all that that involves, the incident might have been passed over as a misunderstanding or piece of thoughtlessness on Sir Frederick's part. But this was not so. As an ex-colonial Governor, Sir Frederick must have known what he was doing when, as President of the Trade Fair, he invited Mr. Dupont to open it and when he went about introducing him to people and addressing him with the formality of "His Excellency". This was the man whom the rebel régime had appointed to usurp the authority of the Queen's representative in Rhodesia, and Sir Frederick's action was a very serious matter.
1077 It was a serious matter, too, that he attended the second anniversary celebrations of the U.D.I., something which appeared to give recognition to the act of U.D.I. a; a legal act of independence.
Those are two substantial charges against Sir Frederick's behaviour as a former colonial Governor. The opportunity given to him this morning, to which the right hon. Gentleman referred, to declare his loyalty to the Crown and to renounce any support for or recognition of the illegal régime was perfectly fair, and his decision to turn it down seems to me to support the view that the Government's action was justified.
Bearing in mind all these facts, I must say that the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home), in describing Sir Frederick Crawford as a liberal-minded man, made the gravest misuse of the word "liberal" that I have heard for a long time, even from members of the Conservative Party. As I said last Thursday, one is entitled to expect from a man who was Her Majesty's personal representative and the Government's representative, first, in the Seychelles and then in Uganda, not the same code of conduct but a higher code of conduct than one might expect from an ordinary wayward British businessman who happened to do some foolish things while in Rhodesia.
In fact, so far from that higher standard of conduct having been forthcoming, there has been a pretty low level of conduct indeed. I hope, therefore, that the Opposition, having had the reasons given and having explored the matter in this debate, will agree to withdraw their Motion tonight. I say that because, although I have never sympathised in the slightest with the policies of the Conservative Party, I have always accepted that as a party it had certain attributes—the qualities of honour, loyalty to the Crown and devotion to the maintenance of the rule of law.
If the Opposition do not withdraw the Motion, but force it to a Division, they will instead be showing themselves to be a party of dishonour and treachery, and my hon. Friends and I shall have no hesitation in supporting the Government in the Lobby.
§ 5.23 p.m.
§ Mr. David Ginsburg (Dewsbury)
I shall make a short speech on lines similar to the one just made by the hon. Member for Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles (Mr. David Steel). This Motion and debate throw up two quite separate issues. First, there is the issue of Rhodesia policy, on which I fully support the Government and my right hon. Friend. I only say in passing that, as my right hon. Friend must know, it is a very long road which he will have to follow, and the present case may well be only the first of many such difficult problems.
The second issue is the question of the right of appeal. This goes far wider than Rhodesia. It raises a basic issue of civil liberty. As has become clear from two of the speeches made from this side in the debate so far, the passport is no longer a document of convenience. The holding of a passport is a basic right of any citizen. One could go even further and say that the issue of a passport gives rise to great obligations and duties. A man was hanged in 1945 for treachery in relation to offences germane to the holding of a passport. This is, therefore, no unimportant or academic topic.
My concern is primarily about the great power which is given to Ministers without adequate public accountability. This is no criticism of my right hon. Friend the Commonwealth Secretary, whom we all respect. It is just as much a criticism of previous Governments as of this. One appreciates that when dealing with questions of this kind it is not always possible for Ministers to give their reasons. One wonders even in the present case whether my right hon. Friend has been totally frank with the House and given all his reasons.
In such a situation, when a Minister cannot give all his reasons in the public interest—my right hon. Friend was quite clear about that on Thursday—the House requires that there be an additional safeguard introduced. There is need for an appeal machinery, though whether of a statutory or advisory kind we can argue later. We on this side have nothing to be ashamed of in this regard. My right hon. Friend will recall that in 1956, when we were in opposition, the Labour Party conference debated this issue, and a moving speech was made by my right hon. Friend the Member for Llanelly 1079 (Mr. James Griffiths). We then expressed certain views about the need for an appeals machinery to deal with the use by Ministers of these exceptional powers.
It is, perhaps, worth recapitulating some of the precedents which exist. There has already been reference to the procedure under Regulation 18B. Now, with reference to the speech of my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot), it is worth recalling that it was a Labour Home Secretary who, in the exercise of his judgment, recommended the establishment of such an appeal procedure and who took the unpopular course of releasing Sir Oswald Mosley from detention at that time. Also, we have the precedent of the late Lord Attlee's action in instituting the "Three Wise Men" appeal machinery to deal with Communists and Fascists in the Civil Service. If my right hon. Friend wanted a machinery readily to hand to deal with the problem which he has just encountered, the "Three Wise Men" might be well suited to deal with such questions if the numbers involved were not too large.
A few weeks ago, we had the recommendations of the Wilson Committee and the suggestion that there should be an appeal machinery for Commonwealth immigrants who, though they might claim to hold British passports, were refused entry to this country. The Home Secretary has assured us that that appeals machinery will be instituted.
There are many other areas, apart from the one we are now discussing, in which the arrangements are far from ideal. The question of aliens and their deportation comes to mind. In that connection, big issues have been raised and debates have taken place in the House in regard to the exercise of this exceptional prerogative by the Home Secretary. There is a lot to be said for an appeals machinery to cover not only such cases as the present one but others as well.
I have no wish to be melodramatic. This is a big issue. Although all of us in the House trust my right hon. Friend personally with these exceptional powers, there are many people to whom one would not care to entrust such powers. Speaking hypothetically, I should not, for example, after a recent speech, like to entrust the passport of a Commonwealth 1080 immigrant to the right hon. Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Mr. Powell). That would be giving him very exceptional power. I remind some of my hon. Friends that there are dangers here not just for people on the extreme Right but for people on the Left and the far Left. Hypothetically, this exceptional power could be used by a Minister of the Crown, for example, to by-pass many of the provisions of Commonwealth immigrant legislation. One could have a very illiberal state of affairs.
Because the Government over Rhodesia rightly stand for very big moral and political principles, often in the face of great difficulty and great unpopularity, it is equally right that on this side of the House we should ask them to stand by principles of civil liberty which are equally vital and equally important.
§ 5.30 p.m.
§ Sir Derek Walker-Smith (Hertfordshire, East)
In spite of the glosses and palliatives sought to be put on this matter by the speeches of right hon. Members opposite, I remain of the opinion that we have in the action of the Government a situation which is serious, unsatisfactory and potentially dangerous, a situation inimical to the rule of law and the basic rights of individual liberty. It is no argument to defend that on the basis that there is arbitrary action also in Rhodesia. That argument is the classic case of the principle, "By Beelzebub, cast out Beezlebub". I prefer to invoke more respectable aid.
The elements which are contrary to the rule of law are judgment without open investigation, condemnation without trial, and punishment without proof. All these elements were demonstrably present in this case. Sir Frederick had no more right of hearing before he was deprived of his passport than if we had been living in the days of the Star Chamber, and there was even less attempt to give him any form of quasi-judicial hearing than apparently, we now see, was accorded to the traitor Philby.
The only hearing, if one could so call it, in this case was the interview this morning with the Secretary of State, after the deprivation had been made; and it is not very satisfactory to have the hearing after judgment pronounced and sentence passed. He was then confronted with 1081 these undertakings of which, apparently, he had not been given any notice, or any prior right to examine. These things strike at the foundations of our constitutional edifice and at the rule of law and there is therefore a clear and imperative duty on the House of Commons, as the traditional guardian of these principles, closely to examine the Government's purported justification for this course of action.
Three main grounds of justification are put forward: first, that no punishment is involved in the deprivation of a passport; secondly, that the matter is within the prerogative and discretion of the Crown, that is to say, the Government, and that therefore normal constitutional principles do not apply and, thirdly, that the information available to the Government in this case was sufficient to justify their arbitrary action on the ground that Sir Frederick was giving aid and comfort to the régime. I do not believe that any of these three justifications is valid.
I need say very little about the first. To say that no punishment is involved in the deprivation of a passport is surely a sophistry at best in present conditions. For a businessman to be deprived of his passport, of his right to travel, adds a pecuniary penalty which must clearly have the substance, if not the form, of punishment.
I pass to the second justification, on which the main constitutional issue turns. The Government appear to say that because this is a matter of prerogative, the citizen has no right of inquiry or redress and Parliament no right of explanation or interrogation. Is this correct? Can this be correct in the second half of the 20th century? Parliament must not be too awed, too mesmerised, too intimidated, when the high priests of the Executive chant the incantation of prerogative. Ministers must not be encouraged to think that they have only to erect a notice-board, "Domain of Prerogative—Trespassers will be prosecuted" and they will be able to take arbitrary action without examination.
§ Sir D. Walker-Smith
I had better not give way. This is a very short debate and the hon. Gentleman is a frequent contributor, both standing and sedentary, to the proceedings of the House.
1082 Parliament must concern itself with the acts of the Executive, even if they are taken within the prerogative, and see that the shield of the prerogative is not used to protect arbitrary or oppressive acts. After all, that is why we are here, and that is why the Stuarts are not here. Blackstone says that the prerogative is enjoyed by virtue of the common law, although out of its ordinary course. It is created and limited by the common law and Parliament therefore has the duty of seeing that these limits are not exceeded.
It is, of course, true that passports are traditionally within the sphere of the prerogative. It is also true that there are cases when the security of the nation requires secrecy of procedure, but to say that because of this every passport transaction is to be done on an arbitrary basis, veiled in secrecy and protected by privilege, is to put a dangerous weapon into the hands of the Executive.
It is perfectly true that the function of passports has radically changed. As The Times said in an excellent leader this morning, the function has been revolutionised. Little more than 50 years years ago a person could travel without let or hindrance wherever he wanted, provided that he was not actually wanted by the police. In the words of the document, it was only an additional facility to help the traveller get such assistance and protection as may be necessary. But today it is a sine qua non for travel outside his own country. As Halsbury puts it,the possession of a passport is now"—showing that this is only a recent development—almost always required by the authorities to enable a person to enter a country".That being so, to deprive a person of his right to a passport is not to withdraw a facility, but to deny by prerogative action one of the rights which distinguishes a citizen of a free country from a subject of a totalitarian country.
The theory of the prerogative, of this limited prerogative which is all that is known to our constitution, does not and should not support arbitrary action when secrecy and executive informality go beyond the imperative needs of security. The whole procedure for passports requires review and revision in the light 1083 of these changed circumstances, to take account of the rights of the individual as well as the security of the State, and to put both before the administrative convenience of the Executive.
I come to the third justification—that the circumstances in this case justify it. Until this afternoon, we were very much in the dark about what the circumstances were. On Thursday, the right hon. Gentleman thought it sufficient to say that he was satisfied, having studied the papers, that it would not be in the interests of the country for Sir Frederick to be given permission to travel abroad. I do not think that we can take that on the ipse dixit of a Minister, even one so personally respected as the right hon. Gentleman. We now know a little more.
We have been given three reasons which were not the reasons why the passport was taken away. First we were told on Thursday that it was not because of his presence at the Trade Fair. Then they were told by the Minister in another place that it was not because he was a resident director of Anglo-American. Thirdly, we have been told this afternoon that it is not because he has been sanction-breaking. Instead, we have been given various reasons, and I will certainly study them in the OFFICIAL REPORT tomorrow with the closeness of attention that they deserve.
Some may be weightier than others, but some are incredibly light ánd trivial. I took some down while the right hon. Gentleman was speaking. He refrained from signing the Governor's Book; he took part in social and charitable occasions at which Mr. Smith and Mr. Dupont were present. If it was not an offence to take part in the Trade Fair when they were present, how on earth can it be said to be an offence to take part in a charitable occasion? Then he made a speech, apparently at the Trade Fair, saying that the Rhodesian economy was standing up to sanctions. I read that in the works of eminent economists in the most respectable newspapers of the land.
What worries me most was the right hon. Gentleman's words:He adopted a course of behaviour which gave every appearance of treating the regime as an equal.On Thursday the right hon. Gentleman assented to the proposition of the right 1084 hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot), that those who give, or appear to give, aid and comfort to the régime cannot expect to travel on British passports. Appear to whom and on what basis? Appear, presumably to the Minister, who takes to himself the absolute and unregulated power of confiscation, to be exercised on mere impression, without tested evidence.
The words "aid and comfort" are themselves drawn from the Treason Act—the gravest offence in our criminal calendar—an offence which has to be strictly proved by express testimony of overt acts. These are the words being bandied about, the words on which people can be convicted, apparently without charge made, and on this sort of evidence. All these things give rise to the greatest disquiet. Where is it to end? Not with Sir Frederick, not necessarily with the residents in Rhodesia. If, as a matter of prerogative, the Government can exercise these powers, on so subjective and untested an impression of aid and comfort, then they can do the same to the holders of British passports resident in this country.
If that doctrine is correct there cannot be any distinction either in law or logic, between the two. What is sauce for the Rhodesian will be sauce for the British holder of a passport, and very bitter sauce it is. What would be the position of those who like to put up stickers on the back of the car saying "Support Rhodesia"? Will not they be said to be giving aid and comfort? [Interruption.] How about people who write to friends and relatives in Rhodesia, saying rude things about the Prime Minister? What about people who say that sanctions have failed? What about hon. and right hon. Gentlemen who may vote against the continuing folly of sanctions? What about all those millions in the country who support them, and who reject this doctrine put forward by the Government?
There would be a position where the Government would be entitled, if they so wished, to deprive a majority of the country of their passports on the diktat of what is now patently a minority Government. That is the reductio ad absurdum, showing the lack of logic and the basic fallacy and inequity of the Government's action.
1085 The Government's three attempts at justification are all unjustified and unfounded. Of course, Governments should be vested with special powers for dealing with matters affecting the security of the realm. That is in conformity with the time-honoured principle of salus populi suprema lex. History shows however that these powers can be abused; and history shows that they are most susceptible to abuse by weak and unpopular Governments desperately seeking to underpin the authority for which they have no support in public esteem or popular will. That is the position today, and it is one which this House should unhesitatingly and unequivocally condemn.
§ 5.47 p.m.
§ Mr. R. T. Paget (Northampton)
I agree with the right hon. and learned Member for Hertfordshire, East (Sir D. Walker-Smith) with regard to the change in the nature of a passport. At one time a passport was simply a request by one sovereign to another to give special facilities to a traveller. It did not affect the right to travel. Now it has become a condition of that right of travel, the right to come and go which is recognised in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It has become a pretty fundamental thing. By custom, and after all our constitutional law is in the main custom, the rights or of Governments to withhold this liberty to come and go has been limited to two sets of circumstances. One has been where it is desired to prevent someone from travelling because if he does there may be a danger to the security of this Government or perhaps a Colonial Government. That applied rather obviously in the case of Mr. Oginga Odinga when we were the Government of Kenya.
The other case is where we want to prevent a gentleman travelling because we suspect him of a crime; we have perhaps charged him and given him bail and for the moment do not want him to go out of our jurisdiction. There is a slight addendum to that principle where it is a question of removing a child from the jurisdiction of a court. The one thing which was very clear indeed was that this power of withholding or withdrawing a passport was not something which could legitimately be used as a means of punishing people for doing things of which the Government do not approve.
1086 My right hon. Friend, in his astonishingly able speech, gave away every ground upon which his conduct could he justified. He said, quite plainly, that Sir Frederick was not charged with sanction breaking and that it had nothing to do with that. He went so far as to say that that was equally true of Anglo-American. My right hon. Friend the Member for Middlesbrough, East (Mr. Bottomley), whom I tried to interrupt, seemed to suggest that by investing Rhodesian funds in Rhodesia Anglo-American was doing something wrong and seeking to promote exports. The mine in question cannot be in production for two years, so the export aspect of this does not seem very obvious. There is no question of crime.
What seemed to put my right hon. Friend furthest out of court of all was this question of a declaration. If there were a legal necessity, if there were a security necessity, even if there were a sanction necessity, it would not be removed by that declaration. To me, the declaration stank of a confession. As has been said, it was the kind of thing which is asked of people in communist proceedings. The return of one's ordinary and lawful rights depends on one humiliating oneself publicly. If Sir Frederick Crawford had consented to this it would have been a public humiliation for reward, the reward being the return to him of the civil right of every English citizen.
§ Mr. Paget
I am sorry; it is a very short debate.
In these circumstances, I find it impossible to support it in this case, but I would go a little further on the wider issues. Miss Elspeth Huxley, in a remarkable letter in The Times today, drew a distinction between the legitimate objects and the illegitimate objects of our Rhodesian policy. The legitimate object is the advancement of the Rhodesian African to the point at which, as a majority, he becomes responsible for the government of his own country. This is something which I have supported all my life. It had nothing to do with this issue.
In the last conversation on the telephone, between my right hon. Friend the 1087 Prime Minister and Mr. Smith, the Prime Minister promised Mr. Smith that if he would spare him the embarrassment of a declaration of independence we would forego all our reserve powers under the 1961 Constitution and would at no time interfere in the working of that Constitution. That was a Constitution which allowed the Rhodesian Front to give a permanent majority to seats in Parliament reserved for white electors. So much for our Prime Minister's interest in African advancement.
Equally it is absurd to say that sanctions—not as a means of pressure in the early stages to promote negotiation, but to wreck the economy and promote unemployment—are in the interests of the Rhodesian Africans, because any policy of promoting unemployment hurts the weakest and poorest in the community, and in Rhodesia that is the Africans. Least of all do I find it attractive that there should be gloating at the terrible drought which has been hitting Rhodesia and hurting Rhodesia and the Africans whom I know and love. To think that this is the occasion on which we should take that as our excuse on humanitarian grounds for going to the rescue of a Rhodesian! Instead, we have had the illegitimate ground—the ground of legality. What about Nigeria, where a Government of unlawful origin is engaged in a war of genocide in which more people have been killed than the whole of the Vietnam war. What about Zanzibar? What about Uganda? What about Ghana? Every one of those countries we recognise, and I believe rightly, because a Government is entitled to be recognised when it is in effective control within its area and looks as though it will last.
If those conditions are valid in the four countries which I have mentioned, certainly in Rhodesia there is a régime which is entitled to recognition as a lawful Government. It is in effective control. It is firmly established—far more firmly established than the Governments in any of the other countries. In the case of colonial rebellion, the colonial Power may not lawfully refuse recognition when the conditions have been complied with and when the colonial power is plainly impotent to reimpose her authority. If at that point the colonial Power continues to harass, it is acting contrary to 1088 international law. I believe that that is the position today. It is we and not the Rhodesians who are acting unlawfully.
§ 5.55 p.m.
§ Mr. Michael Hamilton (Salisbury)
This is a short debate and I wish to speak only a few minutes.
Some very hard things have been said about Sir Frederick Crawford by the Commonwealth Secretary. I do not know much about Sir Frederick personally, but when I hear things of that sort being said I find myself wishing that he were present in the Chamber and able to answer them. What I wish to say concerns the activity of building up lists and of impounding passports. I find this more than distateful. It reminds me a little of the lists of collaborators which were compiled in France 25 years ago and when wretched girls who spent evenings with German soldiers had their heads shaven.
It is not on humanitarian grounds that I object to this practice. My objection to it is that it is an indication that the Government are fiddling with minor matters while Rome burns. It is yet further evidence, if it were needed, that the Government are only tinkering with the Rhodesian problem. The game of retaining people's passports is rather like Lord North's insistence on retaining the duty on tea. The Minister will remember that the duty was 3d. a pound and that it cost us the American colonies.
The tragedy of the Rhodesian situation is not so much that she has gone off the rails, although I should be the first to agree that she has gone off the rails. To me the tragedy is that she has gone off the rails at a moment when this country is so sadly lacking in even the rudiments of statesmanship. I absolve the Commonwealth Secretary from that. For him we all have great personal respect. After all, the Parliament of this country earned for itself the proud title of Mother of Parliaments, and when we have an erring daughter, as we have in Rhodesia, adopting high moral attitudes does not bring her home. We do not bring her home by lifting the passports of her leading citizens. We do not bring her home by nattering about her misdeeds in the market place of the United Nations. Rhodesia, be it said, is a young country and, in terms of population, a small country. Righteous indignation and 1089 censorious attitudes will not put her back on the rails. It will need statesmanship, tolerance and magnanimity.
I was in Rhodesia in a private capacity for a few days only last month. I did not meet any members of the Administration. I did the normal things which any of us visiting that country might do. I had a look at the cathedral, which recently had an extension added. I was proud to find that my constituents in Salisbury, Wiltshire, made a small contribution to it.
I went to the game reserve 15 miles outside the city and photographed the animals. I saw the huge sheds to which the right hon. Gentleman referred earlier where the unsold tobacco crop is stored.
On the Saturday afternoon I went to the Glamis sports stadium. I was one of 5,000 or 6,000 spectators. The occasion was the conferment of the Freedom of the City of Salisbury on Mr. Ian Smith. The sun shone—[HON. MEMBERS: "Oh."]—and Boy Scouts handed out programmes. There were two bands and a mayoral procession and ice creams—[An HON. MEMBER: "What was for tea?"] It was the same as any summer Saturday afternoon function to which any right hon. or hon. Member might go. I admit I was conscious that there were no Africans in the crowd, despite the free spectacle. I would also be the first to admit there was a curiously high proportion of children there. A whole section of the grandstand had been set apart for them. Schools had been warned well in advance not to hold their sports days that afternoon.
Mr. Smith spoke for 20 minutes or so. There was no reference in what he said to the United Kingdom or to any other country. He dwelt really on his links with the City of Salisbury and on the fact that his father had ridden races on the local racetrack near by. He made only two political points: first, the intention of ending all Press censorship; and, secondly, concerning the constitutional report which had just come into his hands and was to be published four days later he mentioned that it had 179 pages, several appendices, and that it would give food for thought and discussion and argument during the months ahead.
If it is any reassurance to hon. Gentlemen taking part in the debate, I have 1090 never counted myself an admirer of Mr. Smith's. That has applied during U.D.I. and during my recent visit. But it must be said that he spoke that afternoon with great moderation and restraint, and there was no defiance in his political comments.
Certainly I deplore the situation into which Rhodesia has placed herself, but I came back more convinced than ever before that it should not be beyond the wit of man to achieve a settlement. Therefore, I beg the Minister to turn his thoughts away from impounding passports to more constructive matters in this frightful problem. I realise it is difficult, but I also think that it has not been well handled.
I agree with the Commonwealth Secretary that one of the few men to emerge from this whole tawdry business with enhanced stature is the Governor. He has shown himself to be a man with unlimited reserves of courage and endurance. I agree with my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Hertfordshire, East (Sir D. Walker-Smith) when he said that we on these benches have a warm regard for the Commonwealth Secretary personally. But, with all deference to him, I feel he should not be wasting his precious time compiling lists. Rhodesia is but a few hours' flying time from here and it is there that he ought to be. Let him take with him the Attorney-General or the Lord Chancellor—somebody who understands constitutional law—and let him be enlightened and original by taking with him a nominee of Her Majesty's Opposition and also a nominee of the Liberal Party. Let him collect this negotiating team together quickly and fly out there and start work.
I am convinced that the door is still open for negotiation. The climate in Rhodesia at this time of year is perfect. I hope that he will consider doing this soon and that he and his team will stay out there as long as need be. We here will wish him every success.
§ 6.5 p.m.
§ Mr. Roy Roebuck (Harrow, East)
In the interests of brevity I will not traverse the whole argument deployed by the hon. Member for Salisbury (Mr. Michael Hamilton). There are two points about his speech on which I should like to comment. First, his idea of statesmanship appears to be that one should turn 1091 a blind eye to the illegal act of independence and all the evils which have flowed from it, including the desire of the Smith regime to keep human beings from expressing what they feel about the manner in which their lives should be run for the next 100 years.
Secondly, the Attorney-General, together with other Members of Her Majesty's Government, have already tried on several occasions to reach an honourable accommodation with the Smith regime, but on each occasion they have been let down by those people. I have come to the conclusion that they are not persons to be trusted and that the only way in which we can look after our responsibilities there is by a further strengthening of sanctions, so that the business community in Southern Rhodesia will realise that it must reach a proper, sensible and legal accommodation with this Parliament which is responsible for all the people of Southern Rhodesia.
When my right hon. Friend the Commonwealth Secretary came to the Dispatch Box at Question Time last week, I felt that he came with both hands tied behind his back. I am delighted that he has appeared before us today with whatever encumbrances he had removed, and that he "spilled the beans". Certainly, Sir Frederick Crawford can make no complaint about that. Nor, indeed, can the hon. Members of Her Majesty's Opposition. Sir Frederick Crawford has created a great hoo-ha in the public prints about this matter, and he has been most ably assisted by the right hon. and learned Member for St. Marylebone (Mr. Hogg)—I am sorry that he is not here—who made all sorts of outrageous accusations in the House when the matter was raised.
The right hon. and learned Gentleman used to be the chief bellringer of the Conservative Party. It seems that he has now become the chief muckraker of the Conservative Party—particularly if elections are pending. Last week, the right hon. and learned Gentleman had the impertinence to suggest that my right hon. Friend was in process of setting up some sort of police State. Those were his exact words.
That suggestion is ludicrous, particularly as it was directed at my right 1092 hon. Friend, because there is no other person against whom it would be possible to lay that charge with greater inaccuracy. I have known my right hon. Friend for about 15 years. Any suggestion that he would act in a manner which tended to deprive people of their legitimate rights without proper cause is too ludicrous for words.
The Opposition appears to be in some difficulty concerning that allegation, because, whereas the right hon. and learned Member for St. Marylebone and others on the Opposition Front Bench have accused my right hon. Friend of setting up a police State, we had the accusation today from the right hon. Member for Streatham (Mr. Sandys) that this was an act of petty spite. It cannot be both. The impounding of this passport cannot be the first step towards a police State and at the same time be an act of petty spite.
It is the height of impudence for the party opposite to impute base motives to my right hon. Friend and those of us on this side for what has been done. As has been pointed out by my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot) there were many occasions during the period in which the party opposite were in power when this arbitrary right was exercised. It was not only concerning passports that the party opposite used arbitrary powers. One need only go as far back as Nyasaland and the dawn arrests there which were subsequently condemned by the noble Lord, Lord Devlin, in his report. One can also recall the deportation of Archbishop Makarios, which, again, was an arbitrary act, and was illegal; the Enahoro case, and a whole string of others.
I make no complaint about right hon. Gentlemen opposite exercising those powers at that time, because they were responsible to Parliament, however much I might want to quarrel with the nature of their decision. I do not think that right hon. Gentlemen opposite are on firm ground in challenging my right hon. Friend's exercise of power in impounding Sir Frederick's passport, because identical procedures have been adopted for many years.
The right hon. and learned Member for Hertfordshire, East (Sir D. Walker-Smith) gave the House a most interesting 1093 and erudite lecture about the rule of law. I do not disagree with the principles which he enunciated, certainly in the first part of his speech, but what I found surprising was that he had kept his lecture tucked into his waiscoat pocket for so long. He was a member of the Government when those powers were being used, but his voice did not rise with all its Milton overtones in defence of liberty. I really do think that it is a bit thick for the Opposition to criticise my right hon. Friend for exercising the powers which they exercised during their period of office.
I wondered about the reasons for the indignation that we have seen generated on the benches opposite. I believe that there are two reasons for it. First, there is the social status of Sir Frederick. At Question Time last week the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas Home) laid great stress on the fact that Sir Frederick was a distinguished former colonial Governor. We heard a great deal about that aspect of his career. I wonder whether the Opposition would have raised such a hoo-ha if we had been discussing Fred the window cleaner, or Fred the dustbin man. I doubt it. Before they cry Civis Britannicus Sum they might like to consider that Palmerston was defnding a person not of Sir Frederick's social status.
§ Mr. Bernard Braine (Essex, South-East)
I hope the hon. Gentleman is not overlooking the fact that Sir Frederick's passport is only one of a large number of such cases? One case which has aroused the greatest possible indignation is that of a former Mayor of Salisbury who is a known opponent of the Smith régime. On what basis has he been deprived of his passport?
§ Mr. Roebuck
That is not in the Motion. I agree that that case ought to be examined, and if the party opposite had shown more competence and put it on the Order Paper we might have been able to discuss it. If that is the hon. Gentleman's attitude, he finds an echoing call from my heart. If we go back to Rainborowe we can say thatThe poorest he that is in England hath a life to live…",but that has not been the Opposition's attitude.
1094 The second reason why the party opposite has raised this issue is that although many hon. Gentlemen opposite voted for sanctions, many of them do not believe in them. They do not want to see sanctions used. They do not want to see the downfall of this illegal régime which intends to deprive human beings of the right to decide their future.
At election times hon. Gentlemen opposite drape their platforms with the Union flag, but when big business interests are threatened they decide not to support Her Majesty's Government in defending those who show loyalty to the Queen, and say that those who want to travel on a British passport should get every aid and comfort from the Crown, when they have not been supporting the Crown in Southern Rhodesia. I find it hard to understand the Opposition's attitude.
I shall be very brief, but the issue has been raised by my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Ipswich, and by others, about whether it is proper for a Minister alone to have the power to impound a passport. Some hon. Members think that there ought to be some right of appeal to a tribunal. I am not out of sympathy with that idea, but let it not be said that there has not been some sort of appeal in this case. The matter has been thoroughly ventilated in the House, and my right hon. Friend has given the reasons why this passport has been impounded. That in itself gives the absolute lie to the suggestion by the right hon. and learned Member for St. Marylebone that we are living in a police State. We have had every opportunity today to hear from hon. Gentlemen opposite why this person who has shown disloyalty to the Crown should be given a passport and assistance by the Government in travelling about the world. The matter has been gone through very thoroughly indeed.
I accept entirely the reasons which my right hon. Friend has given for the impounding of this passport, but I think it desirable that the House should give further study to the system which has operated for so long. It is desirable that we should have a more efficient method of examining Ministerial actions with regard to the impounding of passports. One of the suggestions that is going the rounds is that aggrieved persons should be able to apply to a tribunal of Her Majesty's 1095 judges. I do not think I find myself particularly attracted to that idea. Her Majesty's judges over the years—and I am not referring to the present ones—have never been in the vanguard of liberty. It is this House which has been the beacon of liberty to the nation, and I should like to see a system introduced whereby aggrieved persons can come to a Select Committee where the matter at issue can be considered; for it is this House which ought to examine whether liberty has been interfered with.
I think that my right hon. Friend has made his case. Whatever misgivings I had at Question Time last week have been removed by the full and frank explanation that we have received. I am astonished to discover that, in the face of that, hon. Gentlemen opposite can proceed with their Motion. I shall vote for the Government tonight with a very good heart.
§ 6.17 p.m.
§ Mr. Frederic Harris (Croydon, North-East)
I am encouraged to speak because my hon. Friend the Member for Salisbury (Mr. Michael Hamilton) said that he did not know Sir Frederick Crawford personally. So far as I know, nobody has made personal references to him. I have been privileged to have known Sir Frederick, Lady Crawford and the family—and so have my family—for many years.
I have been a great admirer of Sir Frederick throughout his distinguished colonial service, particularly so because of my personal knowledge of him when he was Deputy Governor of Kenya, and subsequently when he became Governor of Uganda. He is a man of very moderate views indeed. He has done as much as anyone to help to bring together the people of all races in Africa, but particularly in East Africa. He is highly regarded personally by everyone in that part of the world.
Subsequent to his retirement from the Colonial Service Sir Frederick's business took him to Rhodesia, and there he has continued to play a prominent rôle. As must be appreciated by all those who know him personally, he has played no active part whatsoever in politics in Rhodesia. Irrespective of what the Minister said, and irrespective of what others have said today, Sir Frederick is not a U.D.I. supporter. Indeed, with his 1096 distinguished and outstanding record, there is obviously tremendous loyalty from Sir Frederick to our Crown, and it is appalling to me that a man with such a history, and holding such sensible and reasonable views which have themselves markedly helped to pave the way for political stability in East Africa between all races, should have been put in this extremely embarrassing position.
When, last February, we debated the Asian exodus from Kenya, it was, regrettably, only too evident, right from the beginning, that responsible Ministers completely lacked knowledge of the facts and the circumstances. Now, this unforgivable blunder has occurred again, undoubtedly arising from the original responsibility of someone for whom the Minister and Ministers are now covering up. Of course, in such a position, the Government will try to stand their ground, but in the circumstances this is quite disgraceful because it is tantamount to finding a man guilty without any proof and without giving him any opportunity to refute the charges. I wondered when the Secretary of State was speaking, whether he would be prepared to make that statement again outside the House. I very much doubt it.
Having made this terrible mistake, the Government should admit it and should return Sir Frederick's passport to him. Noting else can be accepted. Even then, however, they will have caused untold hurt to a man whose conduct is absolutely beyond reproach and who should command the respect of all hon. Members.
§ 6.22 p.m.
§ Mr. David Winnick (Croydon, South)
I do not question the sincerity of the Opposition in raising this matter. I believe that they are sincere and genuine. Anyone watching the way they acted last week on the occasion of the Private Notice Question of the right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) could not doubt the genuineness of their concern over Sir Frederick Crawford's passport. I accept, therefore, that there is very little humbug or hypocrisy over this issue.
But I have not been impressed by their case either last week or today, and this is through no lack of concern on my part about civil liberties. I hope that I have as much concern in personal freedom and 1097 civil liberty, in Britain and elsewhere, as right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite. But I am not impressed because one cannot consider this particular issue in isolation from the whole position in Rhodesia.
When the right hon. and learned Member for Hertfordshire, East (Sir D. Walker-Smith) spoke about "the folly of sanctions"—he will find from tomorrow's HANSARD that those were his actual words—I felt that he summed up the feeling of so many right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite, that basically they are not on our side in trying to win the battle with what we believe to be an illegal and racialist régime in Salisbury. We are virtually in a state of war with that régime. I ask right hon. and hon. Gentlemen to remember that.
It would have been relatively easy for the British Government, since U.D.I., to have resolved the colonial problem in Rhodesia. Both Governments have been faced with tough colonial problems and generally sometimes unfortunately with some violence and bloodshed, at the end of the day we have resolved them. The reason that the Government have not been able to solve the Rhodesian problem and why we are virtually at war is that we refuse to sacrifice the interests of 4 million people who are denied their natural rights because of the colour of their skin.
I hope that the time will not come—certainly under my Government and, I hope, under a Conservative Government—when we will sell out the rights of the majority of the Rhodesian people—[Laughter.] I am concerned, even if some hon. Gentlemen opposite consider it amusing, with the majority of people In Rhodesia. The Africans, and certainly their leaders, believe that we should continue a sanctions policy.
However, apart from the general position in Rhodesia, as my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot) said, hundreds of people are held in detention and restriction. One can go through all the copies of HANSARD since U.D.I. without, I believe, finding a single occasion when any Conservative Member has raised the position of those Africans held in detention. They have shown a complete lack of concern. They are concerned purely because of the case of a colonial ex-Governor whose pass- 1098 port has been withdrawn. I do not disagree with those who have paid tribute on both sides to the person in question. No doubt, over the years, he has given great and distinguished service to the country. I would not wish to deny that: why should I? But he knows very well that, since U.D.I., by giving comfort to the illegal régime, he was acting against the interests of his own country.
The right hon. and learned Member for St. Marylebone (Mr. Hogg), in a very heated exchange last week, implied that Britain was becoming a police State. But it is not Britain which is becoming a police State: it is Rhodesia which remains a police State and uses all the forms of arbitrary arrest and detention to silence opposition to the illegal régime.
I believe that the Government have been right and justified in taking away Sir Frederick Crawford's passport and I hope that it will be a warning to others who have been giving comfort and who have—I must use this expression—virtually "fellow-travelled" with the régime since U.D.I., people who have known the score but have not cared a damn about Britain's interests or those of the majority of people in Rhodesia. It has been said that if Sir Frederick Crawford were in the House, he would be able to explain why he acted in this way. But he had an interview today with the Commonwealth Secretary and he was not willing then to give the requested assurances. Were those assurances so unreasonable? Of course not.
The trouble with the Opposition is that, time and again, whenever a Rhodesian issue comes up, they can, almost automatically, including their Leader, be relied upon to take the point of view of the illegal régime and not to see the point of view of their own country—[HON. MEMBERS: "Do not be silly."] Right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite say that I should not be silly, but when the history of this incident is written—[HON. MEMBERS: "The hon. Gentleman will not be here."] I agree that I may not be here, but I hope that the history books will nevertheless say that, when we showed such concern for 4 million Africans over a quarter of a million Europeans, the British Government in these years were right and justified. I may not be here, but I hope that the time comes when the majority in Rhodesia 1099 can exercise their natural democratic rights, which are now denied them.
The Government have acted correctly and I only hope that the Opposition will recognise that they, too, have a responsibility. We know that a number of Conservative hon. Members have been going over to Salisbury and telling the illegal régime, "Hang on and do not worry: a Conservative Government will give you all you want"—[HON. MEMBERS: "Really."] I believe this to be the case; those hon. Gentlemen who have been saying this to the illegal régime know who they are and it is unlikely that they will deny it. [HON. MEMBERS: "Name them."] One hon. Gentleman went on Salisbury Radio nine or twelve months ago—this was raised in this House—and virtually took to task a Rhodesian newspaper which was critical of the Rhodesian régime. Where is his loyalty? [HON. MEMBERS: "Name him."] Hon. Members know who he was, and had I known that I would have to mention him, I would have given him notice that I would mention his name. But I am willing to do so later.
I hope that the Opposition will withdraw their Motion. If not, I will go into the Lobby against it with no hesitation, because I believe that the Government have made out a very good case for Sir Frederick Crawford's passport being taken away from him.
§ 6.30 p.m.
§ Mr. Edward Heath (Bexley)
Some hon. Members, including the hon. Member for Croydon, South (Mr. Winnick), have ranged fairly widely in their speeches over the different aspects of the Government's policy towards Rhodesia. I do not propose to follow their example, because there will be another occasion to do that. I wish to come to the real subject of the debate, which is, in its broadest aspect, the relationship between the Executive and the citizen. This is a debate on the rights of the individual and personal liberties.
This is a matter about which the right hon. Gentleman the Commonwealth Secretary and hon. Gentlemen opposite have, in the past, always shown much concern. They have constantly expressed their deep anxiety not only about this as a general principle, but about individual cases which they have raised in the House. It 1100 is a matter for regret that in some cases today their deep feeling of bitterness about the Rhodesian situation has clouded their customary concern for the rights of the individual, whether it be a person of influence or a person of no importance whatever. I wish concentrate on the specific issue of the debate on which the vote will be taken later.
First, however, I want to clear the air of some misconceptions. Some hon. Gentlemen opposite has stated that there has been in the debate and that there is in the Motion no general statement of concern for the rights of the African. Many of them have, at the same time, paid tribute to the work which Sir Frederick has done as a most distinguished Governor to further those rights and, indeed, to bring colonial territories to full independence as African countries.
As the Commonwealth Secretary will agree, in the situation in Rhodesia today Her Majesty's Government are unable at the moment to do anything about the rights of Africans, whereas in the matter which has been brought before the House the Government have a specific responsibility. It is, therefore, right that we should raise it in the House. Indeed, I rather wonder whether, if my right hon. Friend the Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) had not been in touch with the right hon. Gentleman's Department and had not asked Questions, the matter would ever have come to light and been debated in the House.
I also wish to make it clear that, in considering the right of Her Majesty's Government to withhold or withdraw a passport, there is, of course, no question whatever of the Government's technical right to do this. There is absolutely no question on that score and, naturally, they can do it under the prerogative. However, it is not correct to say, as the Commonwealth Secretary said last Thursday, that this does not damage or inconvenience the subject. That may have been so at the time when passports for most of the world were either not necessary or did not exist, but today, in the modern world, a passport is essential to enable one to travel freely about one's business. Thus, to withhold it or withdraw it is undeniably gravely damaging to the work of the individual and in many cases to the individual's reputation.
1101 This may raise in modern times the question whether this matter should be handled only through the prerogative. The Times raised this today in a leader and perhaps this is an important question which should be looked at afresh by any Government, perhaps through some suitable form of machinery which they might set up.
There are undoubtedly arguments both ways on this matter, particularly about the way in which the prerogative has been used in the past. However, there is no doubt that in the present situation Her Majesty's Government have the right to withdraw a passport and that the Secretary of State is right to say that passports were withheld and impounded by former Governments. It should be remembered that, when this was done in the past, it was done most sparingly. There were very few cases of it being done. From my experience of Government, I imagine that it was not done on more than two or three occasions a year, if that. It was almost always done in cases where there was a criminal charge, and it was thought that bail was likely to be broken and where it was wished to stop any sort of outlet through the normal channels, or—and these were particularly important cases—where there was a suspected security danger to the safety of the State, including the safety of a colonial territory.
This is a matter of the gravest national interest and it is for this reason that the prerogative has been maintained in the withholding or impounding of a passport. It was, of course, axiomatic that action followed either by way of a criminal case—or was in process in the criminal courts—or, because of suspicion of treachery, a charge was brought in a particular case. Every case was considered carefully before the action and the papers were examined by the Secretary of State, the Foreign Secretary, the Colonial Secretary, the Commonwealth Secretary or the Home Secretary and action was taken at that specific time in such cases.
A quite different situation exists over the withdrawal of British passports in respect of Rhodesia, and this is of fundamental importance to the debate and the future conduct of the Government. I will point out some of the differences in the present position relating to Rho- 1102 desia and the previous situation. This withdrawal of a passport—and the other cases which have been handled by the Government—is not in respect of a case where action is being taken to prevent movement out of the country, because, as the Secretary of State said, Sir Frederick can go back to Rhodesia. Nor is action being taken in the case of a criminal charge for fear of breaking bail. Nor is action being taken to protect the safety of the Realm. These cases are, therefore, in quite a different category from any action taken in the past under the prerogative.
Passports are being removed, impounded, by the present Government, by a Minister, on political grounds because Ministers disagree with the alleged political views and behaviour of individual citizens. That is the basis on which they are being withdrawn. Or, as we have heard today, a passport is being withheld because an individual apparently does not live up to those standards which Ministers, and the Commonwealth Secretary in particular, expect of him. The Secretary of State said that quite openly and frankly. This is the basis on which the House must consider that passports are being removed on a scale which at present is unknown; and I hope that the Minister will deal with this matter specifically.
What is more, Ministers themselves decide which citizen is expected to live up to which particular standard. This is not a criterion which has been announced publicly or even informed privately to the individual. It remains in the mind of a Minister until, in debate, he is forced, reluctantly—as the right hon. Gentleman said, not as a precedent—to announce it. This is an entirely different situation from anything that happened in the past. Moreover, it is on a scale which has never before been known. The only figure we have is that 450 passports have been withheld or withdrawn so far, some Rhodesian and some British.
We do not know the make-up of the total. May we be told? We do know, however, that if the United Nations resolution is carried, the scale of this operation will be greatly increased; there can be no doubt about that, either. [Interruption.] Hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway opposite may have different views, but they do not alter my fundamental point; that this is a complete 1103 change from the use of the prerogative in the past.
The decisions by Ministers must be taken on information which, by the nature of the situation, is bound to be comparatively scanty. Sometimes it will be newspaper reports—and we know that they are not always entirely accurate—and sometimes it will be tittle-tattle. Perhaps it is provided by people whose views—and this we understand well, considering the very tense situation in which they are living—can be highly coloured.
This is not the basis on which previous decisions have been taken in respect of the use of the prerogative, and it is a vital point in the procedure which Ministers are now following. Moreover, they are not taking decisions themselves all the time. I deeply regret this. The right hon. Gentleman said on Thursday that he saw the papers that had been brought to him on Wednesday evening and came to the conclusion that the passport should be impounded.
Sir Frederick Crawford arrived in London on Tuesday, The passport had already been impounded. The decision was taken nine months previously by his predecessor, now Lord Aylestone. Obviously, the Commonwealth Secretary had not had time, or had not known about these matters, to be able to examine the specific case himself and instruct action to be taken until after the passport had been impounded and it became public news. Incidentally, Sir Frederick Crawford came back to London in November of last year, six months after the decision to impound his passport was taken, but it was not done. Even on their own policy the Government are grossly incompetent.
Sir Frederick Crawford then came back and apparently attended a party to which the Secretary of State referred and to which he took exception. But this was after the decision by Lord Aylestone to impound the passport. It can, therefore, have had no reference to the decision of the officer at London Airport. It could have had very little to do with it.
This brings me to the point raised by my right hon. Friend—the black list. Will the Commonwealth Secretary tell the House exactly what is the position about the black list? Is this also circulated to foreign Governments? Has the 1104 prerogative been delegated to a foreign Government to impound a British passport? If so, by what right have Her Majesty's Government done that?
For the reasons which I have given, I do not believe that, if the Government wish to continue with their policy, they can possibly do so by the use of prerogative, in which they refuse to tell the House, or the individual, the grounds on which they have taken action. If the Government intend to continue with the present arrangement for impounding passports, then they must do three things.
First, they must state absolutely clearly the rules on which they are operating. To have a general phrase about "being actively in support of a régime" is not good enough. Secondly, they must inform people if they have lost their right to use a British passport. This is a responsibility of Her Majesty's Government and, if they do this, they must arrange a system so that the case can be heard, and so that a citizen deprived of his passport on these political grounds can attempt to justify himself. This system must be set up. It could be either a judicial system, or, if it is thought to involve security, it could involve Privy Councellors, but preferably a judicial system.
I say to the Government that their approach is completely indefensible, and they must abandon this approach entirely and themselves return to the rule of law. It is no use hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway preaching and telling others that they should observe the rule of law if they sneer when their own Government are asked to do so.
§ Mr. George Brown
I was only trying to suggest to the right hon. Gentleman that he ought to consult his own practice in this matter. He behaved in this way and he did not regard it as a breach of the rule of law when he did so.
§ Mr. Heath
I have explained to the House, and I hope that the right hon. Gentleman was listening, that the difference between what happened when he was Foreign Secretary, in the very small number of cases on security and criminal grounds, is quite different from what will happen in the large number of cases which is bound to ensue if the Government continued with their policy of dealing with individuals on political grounds. This is a fundamental difference. If 1105 British citizens break the law they should be brought to trial for it, and this is what this Government have failed to do and are, in fact, unable to do. Therefore, they have resorted to the use of purely political devices.
I come to the case of Sir Frederick Crawford. I was very glad that the Secretary of State today cleared out of the way the misrepresentations arising from his statements last Thursday. In another place, Lord Shepherd did this last Thursday. He said that it had nothing whatever to do with industrial matters of any kind. That cleared that out of the way completely. These are purely personal grounds.
There have been some who have said that this case has been raised because Sir Frederick Crawford is influential. In fact, hon. Members of this House never heard about the other cases related by my right hon. Friend until this case became public, because they were not brought to public notice. I hope that the Secretary of State will deal with each of the cases which has been brought up here today. Sir Frederick, even though he may or may not be influential, is entitled to exactly the same rights as any individual citizen. Why should he be treated any differently from any other citizen who has come from Rhodesia?
The evidence given by the Commonwealth Secretary this afternoon was, to say the least, exceedingly thin. Apparnetly, Sir Frederick Crawford does not call the Governor "His Excellency". There are many hon. Gentlemen on both Front Benches who have neglected to do that. It was said by the right hon. and learned Member for Ipswich (Sir Dingle Foot) that he referred to "my Prime Minister". If the right hon. and learned Member will refer to the statement of the Chief Justice of Rhodesia he will see that in his judgments he refers to "our Prime Minister".
Matters which may be offensive to the Government include, apparently, organising charitable functions at which members of the Administration appear. The Secretary of State said, "in order to sponsor the Administration", but what matter of judgment is this, as to whether a continuing charitable function at which representatives of the Administration 1106 appear is, in fact, sponsoring them, or even organised to sponsor them? These are matters which cannot justify the action which the Secretary of State has taken.
I wish to ask the Secretary of State this question. The Prime Minister has told the Armed Forces and the Civil Service to continue to work with the régime. Is a businesman not to do this? There are some people in Rhodesia who want to work with both sides; they have what they consider to be no alternative. Some want to remain neutral. The plain fact is that the Commonwealth Secretary does not want Sir Frederick Crawford to remain neutral. He wants to force him to come out and declare, in the form of the declaration he has produced, those words. That is the situation the Commonwealth Secretary wants. To him I say that he has no right to demand that of any individual in Rhodesia, and he has no right to take away a passport if the individual does not do it.
In conclusion, I have absolutely no doubt—and I do not believe that any right hon. or hon. Gentleman in this House any doubt—about the loyalty of Sir Frederick Crawford to the Crown. [HON. MEMBERS: "We have."] Not for one moment. Those who have worked with him and know him do not doubt that. I do not believe that the Secretary of State is, therefore, justified in the action that he has taken.
We condemn him for a procedure which has been described as guilt by association, which may affect people throughout Rhodesia and many in this country. We condemn him because we do not believe that this action contributes in any way to a settlement in Rhodesia, and we condemn him on the specific action of impounding the passport of Sir Frederick Crawford, and for these reasons we shall vote against the Government tonight.
§ 6.48 p.m.
§ Mr. George Thomson
The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Bexley (Mr. Heath) began with a strongly reasoned case—
§ Mr. Thomson
With your permission, Sir, and with the leave of the House, I would like to reply to some points which have been made in the debate.
The right hon. Gentleman began with a strongly reasoned case on an aspect of this problem which causes legitimate concern in many quarters of the House, and that is the problem of how, in the special circumstances of the Rhodesian situation, one can safeguard adequately the rights of individuals. If he had continued on that plane I would have said that this was a very suitable subject for a serious debate in the House, but did not seem to be an adequate subject for a censure Motion. He did, however, come back to more polemical material at the end, and I will deal with that before I finish.
First, I would like to deal with the anxiety he expressed, and which a number of my hon. Friends and the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Hertfordshire, East (Sir D. Walker-Smith) expressed, about the need for an independent review procedure in cases where passports are impounded. This is a real problem, but, of course, it is not a new problem. It is a problem that faced the Conservative Government just as much as it faces the present Government. As I shall show in a moment, the scale of the problem is not very different from what it was with previous Governments in this country. For many years now the great reluctance of Governments to use the power of the prerogative has itself been accepted as a sufficient safeguard to its abuse. All Governments are aware of the very strong feelings that these cases arouse, and no Government will lightly flout them.
Leaving aside the special category of the Rhodesian cases, which I will come to in a moment, there have been about a score of cases of the denial of passports on anything which could broadly be called political grounds in the 23 years under successive Governments since the war. Fourteen of them are cases of mercenaries. The figure of 2,400 quoted by the hon. Member for Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles (Mr. David Steel) are, as to 99 per cent. of them, people who get hard up on holiday and hand in their passports to get their fares home paid.
On this issue of an appeal procedure in relation to passports generally, I am 1108 sure that The Times is right today when it says that this debate is merely the opening of discussions that will go on about this important area concerning the liberty of the individual.
I have been looking urgently into the possibility of special review arrangements to meet the exceptional circumstances regarding the Rhodesian rebellion, and I assure hon. Members that we will consider very carefully what has been said on this aspect of the matter. However, first of all, I want to explain the scale of this. It is on a bigger scale than the non-Rhodesian passport problem, but it is not the difference of scale which has been suggested.
The right hon. Member for Kinross and West Perthshire (Sir Alec Douglas-Home) spoke about hundreds of passports. What is true is that there are about 600 cases of Rhodesians coming here with Rhodesian passports emanating from the illegal régime who have had those passports taken from them, but have had them replaced, as so many want them replaced, by British passports. In fact, there has been no single case in the 600 where anyone has been refused passport facilities.
One comes down to a group of about 24 cases in over two and a half years and, when one looks at the volume of travel between Rhodesia and here and the circumstances created by U.D.I., it is fair to say that the vast majority of ordinary Rhodesian holders of British passports are able to go about their affairs without interference. I hope that that will put the matter in proper perspective. I have said—
§ Mr. Thomson
I am sorry. I cannot give way. The right hon. Member for Bexley took a little longer than was anticipated, and I want to finish what I have to say if I can.
I have said that we will look sympathetically at the possibility of review arrangements, but the House has to face the fact that there are real difficulties both about having an adequate review tribunal and, at the same time, having an effective passport policy against those who, in one way or another, give active support to the régime.
1109 I ask hon. Members, particularly my hon. Friends, to recognise that there is a real conflict between our two aims. While we are ready to consider carefully any practicable method of reviewing cases, we are bound to give priority to ending the rebellion. This is where there is a disagreement between the two sides and where right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite misunderstand the policy of Her Majesty's Government.
The reason for this lies in the nature of what we are seeking to do in Rhodesia. We are seeking a solution without the use of force. This is not a vendetta over passports. We are employing economic, political and psychological weapons as a means of avoiding the tragedy of military warfare, and the use of passports in this respect is a legitimate weapon. We consider that it is legitimate to say to those whose activities are likely to assist and encourage the rebels that they will not be given the assistance of British passports; in travelling to third countries.
§ Mr. Thomson
No, I will not give way.
The realities of the Rhodesian situation, particularly in the case of sanctions breakers—though this does not apply to the case that we are discussing in the Opposition's Motion—are that much of our information comes from sources which it is impossible to reveal without destroying their usefulness.
These powers will be used in the future, as they have in the past, only in a small minority of cases. If in future cases of passport withdrawal, similar to that of Sir Frederick Crawford, the individual concerned gives some public and unequivocal demonstration of attachment to the legitimate Government, I will be ready—except in the case of sanctions-breakers—to consider restoring his passport facilities.
I have been asked about the effect of the current United Nations discussions on this aspect of the Rhodesian problem. It is wrong to say that they will increase the problem in scale, but they will greatly change the nature of it. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary made it very clear that people from Rhodesia who were also United Kingdom citizens would still be able to come here unless they are sanctions breakers or supporters of the regime, and I have given sufficient indication of how small the proportion is.
1110 What will change is that, under the present drafts before the United Nations, it is likely that people coming into that category, as well as people holding passports of the illegal régime, will be turned back when they try to enter this country. However, there will be full opportunity for the House to debate that when it comes before us.
I want now to turn to the Opposition Motion of censure and to the extravagant charges—
§ Mr. Thomson
I am in some difficulty about time. In the case of Mr. Harper, there has been no mistake about the name. He was Mayor of Salisbury during the first two years of U.D.I., and he was publicly associated with the arrival of sanctions-breaking petroleum after the petrol sanction was put on. But Mr. Harper has indicated that he may wish to emigrate to Malta, and we have told him that, if he does, we shall reconsider the matter and give him back his passport.
The question was raised of passports being confiscated at Frankfurt. They were impounded not by the German authorities, but by Her Majesty's Consulate-General in Frankfurt. One of the gentlemen was the chairman of Rhodesia Iron and Steel Company, and the other was the managing director of Rhodesia Alloys. We had evidence that they were attempting to promote trade in Rhodesian goods in breach of the sanction laws of this country, and I hope that the Opposition will support us in legislation that passed through this House.
I turn, then, to the Opposition Motion of censure. There have been the most extravagant charges of tyranny and vindictiveness. This House is always anxious to protect the freedom of any individual. The Opposition have got themselves to the stage where they have lost all sense of fairness and perspective. I am far from suggesting that it is a light matter to deprive a United Kingdom citizen of his passport, but it is exaggerating to use such language asan extreme use of arbitrary powers.The language which came from right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite in the debate might have been more appropriate if it had been used about the hundreds of British subjects who are forcibly detained, 1111 or whose movements are forcibly restricted in the country where Sir Frederick Crawford now lives. There is no redress for those men. They are not allowed to travel inside, far less outside the country. But we have heard no indignation from right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite on that subject.
I want to emphasise that Sir Frederick Crawford is free to go back to Rhodesia. He is also free to go on television, or on "The World at One", to his heart's content. That is some police State! And some censorship! I recollect that, when I was in Rhodesia, the B.B.C.'s representatives were refused entry permits to permit them to cover my visit.
I conclude on this note. It is all important for us to end the Rhodesian rebellion in justice and peace, however long it takes. This is not a matter of one man or another being called "Excellency". It is not even a matter of putting down a rebellion against the Crown. It goes deeper than that—
§ Mr. William Whitelaw (Penrith and The Border)
rose in his place and claimed to move, That the Question be now put.
§ Question, That the Question be now put, put and agreed to.
Question put accordingly,
That this House condemns Her Majesty's Government for withdrawing Sir Frederick Crawford's passport:—
§ The House proceeded to a Division—
§ Mr. Roebuck
(seated and covered): On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. May I respectfully draw your attention to the fact that the Division was called before the hour of seven had been reached?
§ The House divided: Ayes 235, Noes 322.1115
|Division No. 139.]||AYES||[7.0 p.m.|
|Alison, Michael (Barkston Ash)||Corfield, F. V.||Hall-Davis, A. G. F.|
|Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead)||Costain, A. P.||Hamilton, Lord (Fermanagh)|
|Astor, John||Craddock, Sir Beresford (Spelthorne)||Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury)|
|Atkins, Humphrey (M't'n & M'd'n)||Crosthwaite-Eyre, Sir Oliver||Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.W.)|
|Awdry, Daniel||Crouch, David||Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye)|
|Baker, Kenneth (Acton)||Crowder, F. P.||Harvey, Sir Arthur Vere|
|Balniel, Lord||Cunningham, Sir Knox||Hastings, Stephen|
|Barber, Rt. Hn. Anthony||Currie, G. B. H.||Hawkins, Paul|
|Batsford, Brian||Dance, James||Hay, John|
|Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton||d' Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry||Heald, Rt. Hn. Sir Lionel|
|Bennett, Sir Frederic (Torquay)||Dean, Paul (Somerset, N.)||Heath, Rt. Hn. Edward|
|Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gos. & Fhm)||Deedes, Rt. Hn. W. F. (Ashford)||Heseltine, Michael|
|Berry, Hn. Anthony||Digby, Simon Wingfield||Higgins, Terence L.|
|Biffen, John||Dodds-Parker, Douglas||Hiley, Joseph|
|Biggs-Davison, John||Donnelly, Desmond||Hill, J. E. B.|
|Birch, Rt. Hn. Nigel||Douglas-Home, Rt. Hn. Sir Alec||Hirst, Geoffrey|
|Black, Sir Cyril||Drayson, G. B.||Hogg, Rt. Hn. Quintin|
|Blaker, Peter||du Cann, Rt. Hn. Edward||Holland, Philip|
|Boardman, Tom||Eden, Sir John||Hordern, Peter|
|Body, Richard||Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton)||Hornby, Richard|
|Bossom, Sir Clive||Elliott, R.W. (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, N.)||Howell, David (Guildford)|
|Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hn. John||Emery, Peter||Hunt, John|
|Boyle, Rt. Hn. Sir Edward||Farr, John||Hutchison, Michael Clark|
|Braine, Bernard||Fisher, Nigel||Iremonger, T. L.|
|Brewis, John||Fletcher-Cooke, Charles||Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)|
|Brinton, Sir Tatton||Fortescue, Tim||Jenkin, Patrick (Woodford)|
|Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter||Foster, Sir John||Jennings, J. C. (Burton)|
|Brown, Sir Edward (Bath)||Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh (St'fford & Stone)||Johnson Smith, G. (E. Grinstead)|
|Bruce-Gardyne, J.||Galbraith, Hon. T. G.||Jones, Arthur (Northants, S.)|
|Bryan, Paul||Gibson-Watt, David||Jopling, Michael|
|Buchanan-Smith, Alick (Angus, N & M)||Gilmour, Ian (Norfolk, C.)||Kaberry, Sir Donald|
|Buck, Antony (Colchester)||Gilmour, Sir John (Fife, E.)||Kerby, Capt. Henry|
|Bullus, Sir Eric||Glyn, Sir Richard||Kershaw, Anthony|
|Burden, F. A.||Godber, Rt. Hn. J. B.||Kimball, Marcus|
|Campbell, Gordon||Goodhart, Philip||King, Evelyn (Dorset, S.)|
|Carlisle, Mark||Goodhew, Victor||Kitson, Timothy|
|Carr, Rt. Hn. Robert||Gower, Raymond||Knight, Mrs. Jill|
|Cary, Sir Robert||Grant, Anthony||Lambton, Viscount|
|Channon, H. P. G.||Grant-Ferris, R.||Lane, David|
|Clark, Henry||Gresham Cooke, R.||Langford-Holt Sir John|
|Clegg, Walter||Grieve, Percy||Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry|
|Cooke, Robert||Gurden, Harold||Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland)|
|Cooper-Key, Sir Neill||Hall, John (Wycombe)||Lloyd, Ian (P'tsm'th, Langstone)|
|Lloyd, Rt. Hn. Selwyn (Wirral)||Page, Graham (Crosby)||Stoddart-Scott, Col. Sir M. (Ripon)|
|Longden, Gilbert||Page, John (Harrow, W.)||Tapsell, Peter|
|McAdden, Sir Stephen||Pearson, Sir Frank (Clitheroe)||Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)|
|MacArthur, Ian||Percival, Ian||Taylor, Edward M. (G'gow,Cathcart)|
|Maclean, Sir Fitzroy||Peyton, John||Taylor, Frank (Moss Side)|
|Macleod, Ft. Hn. Iain||Pike, Miss Mervyn||Teeling, Sir William|
|McMaster, Stanley||Pink, R. Bonner||Temple, John M.|
|Macmillan, Maurice (Farnham)||Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch||Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret|
|Madden, Martin||Price, David (Eastleigh)||Tilney, John|
|Maginnis, John E.||Prior, J. M. L.||Turton, Rt. Hn. R. H.|
|Marples, Rt. Hn. Ernest||Pym, Francis||van Straubenzee, W. R.|
|Marten, Neil||Quennell, Miss J. M.||Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hn. Sir John|
|Maude, Angus||Ramsden, Rt. Hn. James||Vickers, Dame Joan|
|Maudling, Rt. Hn. Reginald||Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter||Walker, Peter (Worcester)|
|Maxwell-Hyslop, R. J.||Rees-Davies, W. R.||Walker-Smith, Rt. Hn. Sir Derek|
|Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C.||Renton, Rt. Hn. Sir David||Wall, Patrick|
|Mills, Peter (Torrington)||Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon||Walters, Dennis|
|Mills, Stratton (Belfast, N.)||Ridley, Hn. Nicholas||Ward, Dame Irene|
|Miscampbell, Norman||Ridsdale, Julian||Weatherill, Bernard|
|Mitchell, David (Basingstoke)||Rippon, Rt, Hn. Geoffrey||Webster, David|
|Monro, Hector||Rodgers, Sir John (Sevenoaks)||Wells, John (Maidstone)|
|Montgomery, Fergus||Rossi, Hugh (Hornsey)||Whitelaw, Rt. Hn. William|
|Morgan, Geraint (Denbigh)||Royle, Anthony||Williams, Donald (Dudley)|
|Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles||Russell, Sir Ronald||Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)|
|Munro-Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||St. John-Stevas, Norman||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Murton, Oscar||Sandys, Rt. Hn. D.||Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick|
|Nabarro, Sir Gerald||Scott, Nicholas||Wood, Rt. Hn. Richard|
|Neave, Airey||Scott-Hopkins, James||Woodnutt, Mark|
|Sharples, Richard||Worsley, Marcus|
|Nicholls, Sir Harmer||Shaw, Michael (Sc'b'gh & Whitby)||Wright, Esmond|
|Noble, Rt. Hn. Michael||Silvester, Frederick||Wylie, N. R.|
|Nott, John||Sinclair, Sir George||Younger, Hn. George|
|Onslow, Cranley||Smith, Dudley (W'wick & L'mington)|
|Orr, Capt. L. P. S.||Smith, John (London & W'minster)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Orr-Ewing, Sir Ian||Speed, Keith||Mr. Jasper More and|
|Osborn, John (Hallam)||Stainton, Keith||Mr. Reginald Eyre.|
|Osborne, Sir Cyril (Louth)||Stodart, Anthony|
|Abse, Leo||Coleman, Donald||Fletcher, Raymond (Ilkeston)|
|Albu, Austen||Concannon, J. D.||Fletcher, Ted (Darlington)|
|Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.)||Conlan, Bernard||Foley, Maurice|
|Alldritt, Walter||Corbet, Mrs. Freda||Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale)|
|Allen, Scholefield||Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Ford, Ben|
|Anderson, Donald||Crawshaw, Richard||Forrester, John|
|Archer, Peter||Cronin, John||Fowler, Gerry|
|Armstrong, Ernest||Crosland, Rt. Hn. Anthony||Fraser, John (Norwood)|
|Atkins, Ronald (Preston, N.)||Crossman, Rt. Hn. Richard||Freeson, Reginald|
|Atkinson, Norman (Tottenham)||Cullen, Mrs. Alice||Galpern, Sir Myer|
|Bacon, Rt. Hn. Alice||Dalyell, Tam||Gardner, Tony|
|Bagier, Gordon A. T.||Davidson, Arthur (Accrington)||Garrett, W. E.|
|Barnes, Michael||Davidson, James (Aberdeenshire, W.)||Ginsburg, David|
|Barnett, Joel||Davies, Ednyfed Hudson (Conway)||Gourlay, Harry|
|Baxter, William||Davies, G. Elfed (Rhondda, E.)||Gray, Dr. Hugh (Yarmouth)|
|Beaney, Alan||Davies, Dr. Ernest (Stretford)||Gregory, Arnold|
|Bence, Cyril||Davies, Harold (Leek)||Griffiths, David (Rother Valley)|
|Bennett, James (G'gow, Bridgeton)||Davies, Ifor (Gower)||Griffiths, Rt. Hn. James (Llanelly)|
|Bidwell, Sydney||Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||Gunter, Rt. Hn. R. J.|
|Binns, John||dc Freitas, Rt. Hn. Sir Geoffrey||Hamilton, James (Bothwell)|
|Bishop, E. S.||Delargy, Hugh||Hamilton, William (Fife, W.)|
|Blackburn, F.||Dell, Edmund||Hamting, William|
|Blenkinsop, Arthur||Dempsey, James||Hannan, William|
|Boardman, H. (Leigh)||Dewar, Donald||Harper, Joseph|
|Booth, Albert||Diamond, Rt. Hn. John||Harrison, Walter (Wakefield)|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hn. Arthur||Dickens, James||Hart, Rt. Hn. Judith|
|Boyden, James||Dobson, Ray||Haseldine, Norman|
|Braddock, Mrs. E. M.||Doig, Peter||Hattersley, Roy|
|Bradley, Tom||Driberg, Tom||Hazell, Bert|
|Bray, Dr. Jeremy||Dunn, James A.||Heffer, Eric S.|
|Brooks, Edwin||Dunnett, Jack||Henig, Stanley|
|Broughton, Dr. A. D. D.||Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth (Exeter)||Herbison, Rt. Hn. Margaret|
|Brown, Rt. Hn. George (Belper)||Dunwoody, Dr. John (F'th & C'b'e)||Hilton, W. S.|
|Brown, Hugh D. (G'gow, Provan)||Eadie, Alex||Hobden, Dennis (Brighton, K'town)|
|Brown, Bob (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, W.)||Edelman, Maurice||Hooley, Frank|
|Brown, R. W. (Shoreditch & F'bury)||Edwards, Robert (Bilston)||Horner, John|
|Buchan, Norman||Edwards, William (Merieneth)||Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas|
|Buchanan, Richard (G'gow, Sp'burn)||Ellis, John||Howarth, Harry (Wellingborough)|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.)||English, Michael||Howarth, Robert (Bolton, E.)|
|Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green)||Ennals, David||Howie, W.|
|Cant, R. B.||Ensor, David||Hoy, James|
|Carmichael, Neil||Evans, Albert (Islington, S.W.)||Huckfield, Leslie|
|Castle, Rt. Hn. Barbara||Faulds, Andrew||Hughes, Rt. Hn. Cledwyn (Anglesey)|
|Chapman, Donald||Fernyhough, E.||Hughes, Emrys (Ayrshire, S.)|
|Coe, Denis||Fitch, Alan (Wigan)||Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)|
|Hughes, Roy (Newport)||Marsh, Rt. Hn. Richard||Rodgers, William (Stockton)|
|Hunter, Adam||Mason, Rt. Hn. Roy||Roebuck, Roy|
|Hynd, John||Maxwell, Robert||Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)|
|Irvine, Sir Arthur||Mayhew, Christopher||Rose, Paul|
|Jackson, Colin (B'h'se & Spenb'gh)||Mellish, Rt. Hn. Robert||Ross, Rt. Hn. William|
|Jackson, Peter M. (High Peak)||Mendelson, J. J.||Rowlands, E. (Cardiff, N.)|
|Janner, Sir Barnett||Mikardo, Ian||Ryan, John|
|Jay, Rt. Hn. Douglas||Millan, Bruce||Shaw, Arnold (Ilford, S.)|
|Jeger, George (Goole)||Miller, Dr. M. S.||Sheldon, Robert|
|Jeger, Mrs. Lena (H'b'n&St.P'cras,S.)||Milne, Edward (Blyth)||Shinwell, Rt. Hn. E.|
|Jenkins, Hugh (Putney)||Mitchell, R. C. (S'th'pton, Test)||Shore, Rt. Hn. Peter (Stepney)|
|Jenkins, Rt. Hn. Roy (Stechford)||Moonman, Eric||Short, Rt. Hn. Edward (N'c'tle-u-Tyne)|
|Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.)||Morgan, Elystan (Cardiganshire)||Short, Mrs. Renee (W'hampton, N.E.)|
|Johnson, James (K'ston-on-Hull W.)||Morris, Alfred (Wythenshawe)||Silkin, Rt. Hn. John (Deptford)|
|Jones, Dan (Burnley)||Morris, Charles R. (Openshaw)||Silkin, Hn. S. C. (Dulwich)|
|Jones, Rt. Hn. Sir Elwyn (W. Ham, S.)||Morris, John (Aberavon)||Silverman, Julius (Aston)|
|Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)||Moyle, Roland||Skeffington, Arthur|
|Jones, T. Alec (Rhondda, West)||Mulley, Rt. Hn. Frederick||Slater, Joseph|
|Judd, Frank||Murray, Albert||Small, William|
|Kelley, Richard||Neal, Harold||Snow, Julian|
|Kenyon, Clifford||Newens, Stan||Spriggs, Leslie|
|Kerr, Mrs. Anne (R'ter & Chatham)||Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon)||Steel, David (Roxburgh)|
|Kerr, Dr. David (W'worth, Central)||Noel-Baker, Rt. Hn. Philip (Derby, S.)||Steele, Thomas (Dunbartonshire, W.)|
|Kerr, Russell (Feltham)||Norwood, Christopher||Strauss, Rt. Hn. G. R.|
|Lawson, George||Oakes, Gordon||Swain, Thomas|
|Leadbitter, Ted||Ogden, Eric||Symonds, J. B.|
|Ledger, Ron||O'Malley, Brian||Taverne, Dick|
|Lee, Rt. Hn. Frederick (Newton)||Oram, Albert E.||Thomas, George (Cardiff, W.)|
|Lee, Rt. Hn. Jennie (Cannock)||Orbach, Maurice||Thomson, Rt. Hn. George|
|Lee, John (Reading)||Orme, Stanley||Thornton, Ernest|
|Lever, Harold (Cheetham)||Oswald, Thomas||Thorpe, Rt. Hn. Jeremy|
|Lever, L. M. (Ardwick)||Owen, Dr. David (Plymouth, S'tn)||Tinn, James|
|Lewis, Arthur (W. Ham, N.)||Owen, Will (Morpeth)||Urwin, T. W.|
|Lewis, Ron (Carlisle)||Page, Derek (King's Lynn)||Varley, Eric G.|
|Lipton, Marcus||Palmer, Arthur||Wainwright, Edwin (Dearne Valley)|
|Lomas, Kenneth||Pannell, Rt. Hn. Charles||Wainwright, Richard (Colne Valley)|
|Loughlin, Charles||Pardoe, John||Walden, Brian (All Saints)|
|Luard, Evan||Park, Trevor||Walker, Harold (Doncaster)|
|Lubbock, Eric||Parker, John (Dagenham)||Watkins, David (Consett)|
|Lyon, Alexander W. (York)||Parkin, Ben (Paddington, N.)||Weitzman, David|
|Lyons, Edward (Bradford, E.)||Parkyn, Brian (Bedford)||Wellbeloved, James|
|Mahon, Dr. J. Dickson||Pavitt, Laurence||Wells, William (Walsall, N.)|
|McBride, Neil||Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd)||Whitaker, Ben|
|McCann, John||Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred||White, Mrs. Eirene|
|MacColl, James||Pentland, Norman||Whitlock, William|
|MacDermot, Niall||Perry, Ernest G. (Battersea, S.)||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Macdonald, A. H.||Perry, George H. (Nottingham, S.)||Willey, Rt. Hn. Frederick|
|McGuire, Michael||Prentice, Rt. Hn. R. E.||Williams, Alan (Swansea, W.)|
|McKay, Mrs. Margaret||Price, Christopher (Perry Barr)||Williams, Alan Lee (Hornchurch)|
|Mackie, John||Price, Thomas (Westhoughton)||Williams, Clifford (Abertillery)|
|Mackintosh, John P.||Price, William (Rugby)||Williams, Mrs. Shirley (Hitchin)|
|Maclennan, Robert||Probert, Arthur||Williams, W. T. (Warrington)|
|MacMillan, Malcolm (Western Isles)||Pursey, Cmdr. Harry||Willis, Rt. Hn. George|
|McMillan Tom (Glasgow, C.)||Randall, Harry||Wilson, Rt. Hn. Harold (Huyton)|
|McNamara, J. Kevin||Rankin, John||Winnick, David|
|MacPherson, Malcolm||Rees, Merlyn||Winstanley, Dr. M. P.|
|Mahon, Peter (Preston, S.)||Reynolds, G. W.||Woodburn, Rt. Hn. A.|
|Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)||Rhodes, Geoffrey||Woof, Robert|
|Mallalieu, J.P.W. (Huddersfield, E.)||Richard, Ivor||Wyatt, Woodrow|
|Manuel, Archie||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)||Yates, Victor|
|Mapp, Charles||Roberts, Gwilym (Bedfordshire, S.)|
|Marks, Kenneth||Robertson, John (Paisley)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Marquand, David||Robinson, Rt. Hn. Kenneth (St.P'c'as)||Mr. Ioan L. Evans and|
|Robinson, W. O. J. (Walth'stow, E.)||Mr. Charles Grey.|