HC Deb 01 March 1881 vol 258 cc1951-2

asked the Secretary of State for India, Whether the Government intend to instruct Sir Hercules Robinson to treat direct with the Basutos, so as to ensure fair and reasonable terms of peace being offered to them?


Sir, I must refer the hon. Member to the following passage in the Instructions addressed to Sir Hercules Robinson on the 30th of December last:— If the Colonial Government should desire that an effort should be made to bring about a settlement through the Imperial authority and you should be satisfied that the Basutos would be willing to place themselves in the hands of Her Majesty's Government, I should be ready to receive favourably any proposition for the appointment of a Commission to consider and recommend terms of settlement, or for the direct intervention of the Crown if that should appear preferable. Neither of the conditions contemplated being fulfilled at the present time, He Majesty's Government are unable to give Sir Hercules Robinson instructions to treat directly with the Basutos; but he will continue to use his influence in favour of a settlement upon fair and reasonable terms.