Cabinet Secretaries' notebooks (CAB 195/18): PM's Africa tour
PM's Africa tour
A few impressions.
Diff. time ahead where we have responsibilities.
i) Ghana : may be irresponsible and silly : but rich & homogeneous & will do well enough.
ii) Nigeria : if unity achieved, v. large country, will have good influence on neighbours. Oil may be useful revenue. Fundamentally not a real nation. Aristocratic influence of North - Duke of Omnium. Will the parts cohere? Possibly because attractions of size in present state of world affairs. Br. connection highly prized. Robertson : not fit for independence - 20% loss of efficiency - but after a point you lose by trying to retard, and wiser to let it go.
iii) Union. We aren't responsible. Having said what had to be said on racial ques, we must now concentrate on our agreements and hold this in Commonwealth. They have played the game with us, in many troubles - we shd. recognise that. And a flourishing country with gt. future (?). Must keep them with us. Much thinking among younger people. Pity Afrikaaners don't travel more abroad.
iv) Federation. We have the responsibility - it is a v. diff. task. Must move fast enough to satisfy Africans w'out getting Europeans in a panic. S. Rhodesia v. excitable : might act rashly. We have no power - only influence. Must play for time during '60. Monckton will be more valuable than they think. I have said enough to stress belief in liberal tradition : we can afford to show more considn. for Europeans : keep them in play until M. has reported.
Warning : I returned with grave anxiety about future of Federation.
Tredgold says referendum in S. Rhodesia now wd. produce v. large majority in favour of leaving Federation.
Effect on Congo decision on E. and Central Africa.