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Volume 655: debated on Tuesday 13 March 1962

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what complaints he has received concerning irregularities during the recent general election in Malta; what inquiries are being made; and if he will make a statement.

Two days before the elections the Governor received certain written representations from the Malta Labour Party, which he discussed with a delegation from the Party on the same day. The delegation was unable to produce direct evidence in support of their allegations. No further complaints have been received.

Is the Minister aware that the whole of the Maltese Press and the foreign Press of the world was full of the irregularities taking place during this election, and, in view of the statement made to him in a memorandum from the Labour Party of Malta and amplified to the Governor, will he now hold an inquiry into the whole position? The right hon. Gentleman was asked to send someone down there during the period of the election and he refused to do it. Will he now hold an inquiry into the allegations that have been made?

No. I do not think there is any substance in that. The Governor has discussed the representations received from the Malta Labour Party, and my own impression is that the authorities in Malta did a very good job in conducting the election.