HC Deb 24 February 1887 vol 311 cc457-8
MR. CHANNING (Northamptonshire, E.)

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies, Whether it is true, as stated in The Times newspaper of 10th February, that Dinizulu and the other Zulu Chiefs were not summoned by Mr. Osborn to take part in the settlement of the new boundaries of Zululand till the work of the Boundary Commission had been completed, and that at the meeting of 28th January to confirm the decisions of the Commission Mr. Osborn forbade the presence of white men, and refused to permit the Zulus to communicate with Natal, or in any way with the outside world until they had consented to the proposed annexation; whether the boundary line originally insisted on by Sir Arthur Havelock, and approved by Earl Granville, was to be drawn from Ibabanango Hill to Imhlazatye Hill and thence in a northerly direction to the Pongo River, the line now agreed upon and approved by the present Ministry surrenders to the Boers on the North the important district of Umgojana, forming a wedge between Eastern Zululand and Swaziland, and on the South another wedge-shaped strip of territory between Eastern Zululand and the Reserve; whether the boundary as now agreed upon will seriously interfere with the control of communications, and with the interests both of the Zulus and of Natal; whether the Boers are already attempting to carry out in Swaziland, which is now the scene of numerous gold mining enterprizes, the same tactics that have been so successful in Zululand; whether the Zulu Chiefs have protested against the new boundary, and have again signified a desire to appeal directly to Her Majesty's Government in England; and, whether further Papers, giving particulars of the more recent negotiations between Sir Arthur Havelock and the Boers, and specifying the exact boundary agreed to, will be laid upon the Table of the House before the Estimates affecting South Africa are moved?


The hon. Member asks me six questions. With regard to the first and fifth, the Zulu Chiefs were invited to send a Commissioner to act with the British and Boer Commissioners in the demarcation of the boundary, and it is believed that he was present from December 12 to the conclusion of the demarcation on January 25. During this period Dinizulu and other Zulu Chiefs attempted, under the advice of certain white persons, to reopen the general question of the partition of Zululand, and Sir Arthur Havelock promised to receive them after the demarcation had been completed. We have no knowledge of the alleged occurrences at the meeting of January 28. The Zulu Chiefs were informed that Her Majesty's Government could not entertain any appeal for the reversal of the arrangement, and since then favourable answers have been received from them. With regard to Questions 2 and 3, the boundary line has been altered as stated, for reasons which will appear in the Papers which I have presented this afternoon. The boundary, as now settled, does not interfere with communications, or injure the interests of Natal; and it recovers for the Zulus a considerable amount of the territory which they had practically surrendered to the Boers in 1884. Free transit through the new republic will be provided in the Convention. In reply to Question 4, some trespasses of Boers into Swaziland have occurred; but the acquisitions of land there have been principally by British subjects. Her Majesty's Government are inquiring into the condition of Swaziland. With regard to Question 6, I have already stated that the Papers have been presented this afternoon.