asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether the Adoption of Children Ordinance, 1941, of Ceylon, passed by that Government with the object of restraining child slavery, but which contained a section suspending its operation; whereby it can only be brought into force by proclamation, is now in operation; and, if not, will he take immediate steps to effect the same?
The Governor of Ceylon reported in January last that steps were being taken to prepare and to introduce in the Ceylon State Council at an early date legislation providing for certain amendments to this Ordinance which were regarded as desirable before it was brought into operation. I will ask the Governor for a further report and will communicate with the hon. Gentleman when I have received it.
In view of the years of delay in this matter, would the Minister put the maximum pressure on the local Government in Ceylon to push on with the task of implementing these Ordinances?
I am anxious to see this done, but the hon. Gentleman will realise that this is one of the matters in which Ceylon exercises a very great measure of self-government.