Palestine Immigration Section Again Becomes Government Department: Mr. Hyamson Remains Director

The Permits Section of the Palestine Secretariat and the Section of Police and Prisons have been raised with the commencement of the new year to the status of Government Departments.

Mr. Albert M. Hyamson, the Director of the Permits Section, remains Director of the Department of Immigration, with Mr. R. D. Badcock as Assistant Director.

The Department of Immigration and Travel of the Palestine Government was established under the direction of Mr. Albert M. Hyamson on September 1st., 1920 for the purposes of the regulation and control of immigration into Palestine and the admission and departure of travellers to and from Palestine as well as registering changes of name by inhabitants of Palestine and issuing provisional certificates of nationality to Palestinians. The Department of Immigration and Travel and also the Sub-Department of Labour were abolished on April 1st., 1924 for reasons of economy, and their duties transferred to the Permits Section of the Palestine Government Secretariat, which was then established, with Mr. Hyamson continuing to be in charge as Controller.

Mr. Hyamson was at one time a leading English Zionist, but his views have since changed. During the sitting of the Shaw Palestine Enquiry Commission after the 1929 outbreak, Mr. Stoker, the Counsel for the Arab Executive, asked Mr. Harry Sacher whether Mr. Hyamson was a Zionist. No, Mr. Sacher replied, but he was. You’d better ask him for his views.

With Mr. Norman Pentwich’s relinquishment of the office of Palestine Attorney General, Mr. Hyamson is now the only Jew holding a senior appointment in the Palestine Government service.

The elevation now of the two Secretariat Sections to be Government Departments may have some connection with the recommendations of the O’Donnell Economy Commission, which have not yet been made public officially, but which, it has been stated, will involve the dismissal of 50 senior and 250 junior Government officials.

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