HC Deb 07 July 1835 vol 29 cc297-8
Mr. C. Villiers

said, that seeing the hon. Gentleman, the Member for Hull (Mr. Hutt) in his place, he (Mr. Villiers) wished to ask him, as one of the Commissioners appointed by the Crown to carry the Act of Parliament for establishing a new colony in South Australia into execution, whether any, and what steps had been taken with regard to effecting the object of that Commission? He asked this question, at the instance of many persons interested in the formation of this new colony.

Mr. Hutt

was happy to give the hon. Gentleman such information as it was in his power to do on this interesting subject. As soon as the Commission was issued by the Crown, the gentlemen named in it directed their earnest attention to the object, with a view to carry into effect the provisions of the Act under which they were appointed. However easy or simple that task might appear, the Commissioners had found it surrounded with considerable difficulties. They had, however, overcome those difficulties, and had printed and circulated widely, a paper, the result of their labours, in which were set forth the rules and regulations by which the new colony of South Australia was to be governed. By these rules and regulations the Commissioners had endeavoured to prevent that dispersion of persons which had been too much the case in former colonies. He was anxious to set the Commissioners right with the public on one other point. This Commission had been described out of doors as being a mere job. He denied this; and to shew that it was no job, he begged to inform the House that the Gentlemen who were now appointed Commissioners to carry the Act into effect, were the identical persons intended to be appointed by the Government of which the right hon. Baronet opposite (Sir Robert Peel) was the head. With respect to the Commissioners themselves, he could only say that they had undertaken a duty considerable responsibility—that of carrying into effect a measure of great public good; and they would endeavour to obtain that reward which they hoped would not be withheld from them—the public approbation.

Mr. Mackinnon

said, that as his name was connected with the Commission in question, he was desirous of saying one word. He felt extremely anxious to do his duty to the best of his power; but it would be upon a clear and distinct understanding that he would never receive any reward or compensation whatever for any duties that he might perform. It was unnecessary for him to say more than that; generally speaking, he concurred with the hon. Gentleman, the member for Hull, in what he had stated; and that he believed the object they had in view in that part of the world to which the Commission related, would ultimately be attained. How long it might be before South Australia should become such a colony as it was desirable to make it, he could not possibly say; but that it would eventually be successful, he did not hesitate to declare as his decided opinion.