§ (2.) £24,319, to complete the sum for the Colonies, Grants in Aid.
§ SIR MICHAEL HICKS-BEACH
said, he understood it was arranged that the debate on the South African question should be taken next day on the Report instead of at that time; and as that course would not only be more convenient, but would also facilitate the progress of Supply, he did not propose to discuss the Vote on the present occasion. He hoped the noble Lord would be able to arrange that the discussion should come on first, for he had heard that there were several hon. Members who desired to take part in it; and if that were so, it would probably occupy several hours.
THE MARQUESS OF HARTINGTON
said, he hoped to put down the Report of Supply as the First Order at the Morning Sitting the next day, or that they would be able to finish the debate at the Evening Sitting.
§ SIR GEORGE CAMPBELL
remarked that he had no desire to disturb this arrangement, but, at the same time, before they voted money they ought to be in possession of the facts, and, therefore, he hoped that the Government would let them know how the matter at present stood in regard to the money owing to this country by the South African Colonies. At present we had a very large claim upon these Colonies, for we had not only paid for the British troops engaged in the war, but had defrayed the expense of the commisariat of the Colonial troops. These Colonies had not at present paid back one farthing of this money, although they had largely profited by the money expended in the Colony during the war. He believed some offer was made to the Colonies that if they would agree to Confederation, this debt should be wiped off. But as that scheme had turned out a failure, he thought, before voting this money, they ought to know something of their position.
MR. GRANT DUFF
said, it would be better to defer the whole discussion until the time fixed. If they went into any part of the matter in issue, it would certainly raise a discussion involving the whole.
§ Vote agreed to.