HC Deb 21 December 1888 vol 332 cc996-8

I rise to move the Adjournment of the House, and in doing so wish to read two letters which have come to hand, and which will, I am sure, be satisfactory to the House. There is a Reuter telegram, dated Zanzibar, Dec. 21, to the following effect:— Letters dated from Stanley Falls on August 29 last reached here by Tippoo Tib's men today, stating that on the preceding day a letter had been received from Sir. Stanley. He was then at Bonalya, on the Aruwhimi. He had left Emin Pasha 82 days previously in perfect health, with plenty of food, and had himself returned for his rearguard and loads. He had arrived at Bonalya on August 17, and intended leaving ten days later, presumably to rejoin Emin Pasha. All the white men of the expedition were in good health and wanted nothing. There is a further telegram from the Eastern Telegraph Company, who have had the courtesy to put it into our hands. It is dated "Friday, 2 p.m.," and is from the agent of the Company to Sir James Anderson:— I have just received information Stanley has arrived with Emin Pasha on the Aruwhimi; news reliable; further details follow.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That this House do now adjourn."—(Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer.)

SIR WILFRID LAWSON (Cumberland, Cockermouth)

said, there were reports that our troops were to march on Handoub. He did not hesitate to accept in good faith what the Government had said on the subject, but he thought it would be satisfactory to them if the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer would say that there was no truth in the reports.


We have no information whatever to that effect from General Grenfell.

MR. CONYBEARE (Cornwall, Camborne)

in reference to an answer by the right hon. Gentleman the Home Secretary yesterday, as to the handcuffing of a boy while being removed from prison to the reformatory, read a letter from an ex-warder of Strangeways Gaol, Manchester, stating, in contradiction of the answer, that it was not only customary but compulsory to handcuff boys in such circumstances, and asked the right hon. Gentleman whether he would be kind enough to inquire further into the matter?


said, the information he read to the House, of the accuracy of which he had no doubt, was derived from the prison officials, and it was to the effect that it was not usual to handcuff a boy unless there was apprehended danger either of an attempted escape or rescue. He would be glad, however, to see the letter sent to the hon. Member by an ex-warder.

SIR GEORGE CAMPBELL (Kirkcaldy, &c.)

said he must press for a more distinct answer to the question addressed earlier in the evening to the Secretary of State for War (Mr. E. Stanhope) as to whether the British troops at Suakin, having done their duty, would now return, or whether discretionary power had been given to the commanding officer to carry on further operations in the Soudan. He gave as a reason for pressing the question that the answer of the Secretary of State was an evasive one.


Really the hon. Gentleman is so suspicious that it is useless giving him any declaration whatever. We have nothing whatever to take away from any declaration we have made. There is no change whatever in the situation; and I am surprised that the hon. Gentleman, who has himself governed a Province, and who must be acquainted with the ways of the Press, should consider that everything stated as regards the intentions of the Government must immediately be contradicted or otherwise be accepted as correct. I have really nothing to add. We shall not depart one inch from the declaration I have made.

MR. H. T. DAVENPORT (Staffordshire, Leek)

asked if the telegram read a few minutes before to the House stated the date of the reported arrival of Emin Pasha and Stanley at the Aruwhimi?


We have not got the date.


said, that would make it about August.


Further details are to follow. I suppose they will be here in a few hours.

Motion agreed to.

House adjourned at twenty-five minutes after Five o'clock.