Corpun file 24317 at www.corpun.com
The Times, London, 22 March 1946, p.8
House of Commons
Thursday, March 21
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On the motion for the adjournment Mr. BENSON (Chesterfield,
Lab.) raised the question of the reintroduction of flogging in
Trinidad. He said that Britain was the only country in Europe to
retain corporal punishment, and that the British Empire was the
only Colonial Empire which still found it necessary to flog
Mr. CREECH JONES, Under-Secretary for the Colonies (Shipley,
Lab.), said that a request was made to the Secretary of State
soon after taking office to authorize legislation to reintroduce
flogging in Trinidad. Naturally he was most reluctant to do so,
and referred the matter back to Trinidad. The authorities there
almost unanimously recommended that the situation was such that
some such action as they had asked for was imperative. With the
greatest hesitation and reluctance the Secretary of State agreed
that such legislation as was complained of should be introduced.
But he suggested that the legislation should be for a period of
two years and that reports should be furnished at the end of six
months and that if no action had been taken by the end of 18
months he should then have an opportunity to bring the whole
question under review.
-- The House adjourned at 13 minutes before 10 o'clock.
Corpun file 24316 at www.corpun.com
The Times, London, 27 March 1946, p.5
Flogging in Trinidad
To the Editor of The Times
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Sir, -- Mr. Creech Jones has stated that the Secretary of
State for the Colonies has authorized the reintroduction of
flogging in Trinidad. In February, 1938, the late Lord Olivier
informed the House of Lords in emphatic terms that the West
Indian Negro regards flogging as a degrading and disgusting
punishment, but Mr. Creech Jones has no doubt borne it in mind
that a few days later he received an assurance from Mr. C.S.
Taylor, member for Eastbourne, that many of the Trinidad natives
prefer corporal punishment to the delay caused by waiting for a
court of justice and any ultimate imprisonment!
The 1937 Riots Commission made the -- to my mind -- outrageous
recommendation that the stealing of vegetables should be punished
by flogging. I, on the contrary, advocated the total abolition of
corporal punishment and I understand that my successor, Sir
Hubert Young, brought this about. I know nothing of present-day
conditions in Trinidad, but I venture to ask the authorities: Are
they in fact so utterly void of alternatives that they must
perforce fall back upon this retrograde step which they now
I am, Sir, yours faithfully,
MURCHISON FLETCHER, formerly Governor of Trinidad.
5, Chartfield Avenue, S.W.15, March 23.
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