March 24, 1952 (21st Parliament, 6th Session)


Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)


Right Hon. L. S. St. Laurent (Prime Minister):

Members of the House of Commons will have learned with profound regret of the death of the distinguished Prime Minister of Ceylon, the Right Hon. Don Stephen
His loss will be deeply felt in Ceylon, where he served in public life faithfully and with great distinction for thirty years. Itwas under his leadership that Ceylon, a
crown colony, attained dominion status in 1948, and became a member of the commonwealth of nations.
I had the privilege of meeting Mr. Senanayake at the meetings of the commonwealth prime ministers in London in 1948, and again in 1951, and learned to value his wisdom and vision, especially about affairs on the Asian continent. It is not only his own country which will mourn his loss; the whole of the commonwealth is saddened by his tragic death. Ceylon has indeed lost one of its faithful servants, and the commonwealth one of its wisest statesmen.
His Excellency the Governor General and I have already expressed the sympathy of the government and people of Canada with the people of Ceylon, and with the members of the Prime Minister's family. To confirm those messages of sympathy, and as a special tribute to the memory of the late Prime Minister, I beg leave to move, seconded by the leader of the opposition (Mr. Drew):
That as a token of our sympathy for the family of the late Prime Minister, as well as for all the people of this sister state in the commonwealth, we now stand in this chamber for a moment of respectful silence.

Full View