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Installations, Kenya (Disposal)

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 24 April 1951

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asked the Secretary of State for War what arrangements are being made for the disposal of the installations at Mackinnon Road; and what he estimates the total net cost of the scheme will have been when it has been wound up.

Installations which are capable of being used elsewhere are being removed; the remainder are being disposed of locally. The total capital cost of the project by 31st December, 1951, when it is planned to be finally closed, is estimated at £1,777,000.

Can the Secretary of State say what is the value of the stores and installations which are being disposed of, and whether he is absolutely satisfied that better use cannot be made of them in the present re-armament programme?

It is not a question of stores, but of part of the installations‚ÄĒparts of R.E.M.E. workshops, steel ribs, store sheds, and things of that sort. We are advised that it is much better to dispose of them locally.

Will the right hon. Gentleman say whether the figure which he has given includes the cost of moving the stores from the Canal Zone down to Mackinnon Road and, further, the cost of moving them from Mackinnon Road to another place; whose idea it was originally, and why it has now been overridden?

I think that very few stores were moved down from the Canal Zone. The original project was for dealing with stores which became available from the evacuation of India, and that was where the stores were coming from. That is why the project was started.

May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether it is the policy of his Department, in addition to the installations, to dispose of Lease-Lend goods which are perfectly serviceable, including cameras and such equipment, by depositing them in the sea?

No, Sir. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman will put down a question if he has some instance in mind. I am certainly advised that all disposable goods are being offered for sale.