§ MR. GIBSON
asked the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies, Whether there were any casualties in the garrison of Potchefstroom between date of armistice and date of its surrender; at what dates respectively were the news of the armistice conveyed by the Boers to the other besieged garrisons in the Transvaal; and, whether, having regard to statements that have recently appeared in the press with reference to the condition of affairs at present existing in the Transvaal, he will communicate to the House any information Her Majesty's Government have received on the general subject?
MR. GRANT DUFF
Sir, in reply to the first two Questions, I have to say that no information with regard to the points mentioned has yet been received either by the War Office or the Colonial Office. In reply to the third Question, I have to say that Papers up to the 7th of April will be in the hands of Members not later than Saturday. The Commission should be opened this very day, at Newcastle, by Sir John H. De Villiers and Sir Evelyn Wood. Sir Hercules Robinson is detained at the Cape by a threatened Ministerial crisis; but he trusts by the 4th or 5th of May to join his colleagues at Newcastle. We are in communication with the Boer leaders with reference to the reparation to be made to the Treasury in respect of the occurrence at Potchefstroom; but until Her Majesty's Government can more fully estimate the effect of that occurrence upon the general state of Transvaal affairs, it would not be for the advantage of the public service that I 1310 should give any further particulars. I have further to say that in addition to the Papers to which I referred a moment ago, the Instructions to the Royal Commissioners and other Papers will be laid upon the Table not later than Monday.
§ MR. GIBSON
asked, with reference to the first two Questions, whether the War Office or the Colonial Office had asked for information on the points mentioned, and, if not, whether they would do so?