HC Deb 19 May 1879 vol 246 cc698-9

I wish to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies a Question, of which I have not had an opportunity of giving him Notice, but which, if he would prefer it, I shall be content if he will answer to-morrow. On Saturday, there appeared in one of the daily newspapers a document professing to be a despatch from Sir Bartle Frere, in regard to the Memorial of the Boers. I wish to ask the right hon. Gentleman, Whether he can tell the House if such a despatch has been received, and, if so, whether he will lay it on the Table of the House?


Sir, I have not received any such despatch. On the 24th of April, Sir Bartle Frere telegraphed from Pretoria that Copies of the correspondence between himself and the Boers would be sent by the next mail; but he made no reference to this despatch, which is dated April 17. Of course, however, it may be authentic; and, if it is so, its publication in South Africa before it reached me might be accounted for by Sir Bar tie Frere having shown it to the Boer Committee, to ascertain whether they were satisfied with it as a summary of their arguments.