HC Deb 21 June 1844 vol 75 cc1209-10
Mr. Hawes

, as he saw the noble Lord, the Secretary for the Colonies, in his place, wished to ask him if he had any copies of the Ordinance passed by the Court in Demerara, authorising a loan of 500,000l,., to be secured by the duties on all imports into the Colony, and applied to the purposes of immigration? He also wished to know whether another Ordinance extended the security to the Civil List for seven years, contingent on the refusal of Her Majesty's sanction to the first? He wished likewise to know whether there were any copies of a Decree passed by that Colony removing the restrictions on female immigration? He knew of no objection existing either then or thereafter to laying copies of such despatches upon the Table, and the doing so would be satisfactory to the parties interested, on whose behalf he had put the question.

Lord Stanley

said, that there had been received by the last mail an Ordinance of the Legislature in Demerara authorising certain persons, upon the granting of Her Majesty's Assent thereto, to raise a loan of the amount which the hon. Member had mentioned in this country. This had been brought to him, and inquiries had been made as to the intention of Government. He then said that he could not then approve of the Ordinance, on the ground that it had been passed in great haste, only one day having elapsed in discussing and passing it. As it had been represented to him that the Colony had not had any op- portunity of expressing its opinion on the subject, he would postpone taking any step until he had obtained further information upon the state of feeling in the Colony with regard to the scheme. All this did not interfere with immigration for the present year. As to the question of immigration in Demerara it was found that the proportion of females required for that purpose was so great, and their number in the Colony was so small, that it was necessary for the State to interfere. All the papers relating to immigration to the West Indies had been already laid before the House with the exception of one despatch, and that he had no objection to produce. As to emigration from the East Indies a correspondence had been going on with the Governor General upon the subject, and he could state that a measure was under the consideration of Government, requiring that a certain number of women should accompany every batch of emigrants from India. The question had not yet, however, been decided, because great difficulty existed in prevailing on respectable women to accompany their husbands as emigrants; and it were required that a certain number of women should accompany each batch of emigrants, the class of women who would so accompany them would not be likely to conduce to the cause of respectability or morality. With regard to the Ordinance for the Civil List, it depended on the other Ordinance, but the Civil List related to the year 1847; so that there was ample time to take it into consideration.