§ MR. ERNEST BECKETT (York, N.R., Whitby)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies whether, having regard to the declara 1109 tion made by him on 9th November, 1888, thatThe sphere of British influence south of the Zambesi is declared to extend over the territories north of the South African Republic and the Bechuanaland Protectorate, south of the Zambesi, east of the 20th degree of east longitude, and west of the Portuguese province of Sofala,'it is the case that an English Corporation has since acquired from Moremi, the King of the Bamaugwatos, all the mineral rights, together with timber and grazing rights within his country, which country is included in the area thus defined as lying within the sphere of British influence; whether, in the negotiations now pending in Berlin, Sir Percy Anderson has been informed of the existence of this concession; and whether the Government adhere to the above-quoted definition of the sphere of British influence in South Africa?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE COLONIES (Baron H. DE WORMS,) Liverpool, East Toxteth
The description referred to was accurate so far as it went, but the boundaries are necessarily to a great extent still undefined, as the Zambesi and the 20th meridian do not intersect each other. The question of further delimitation is now the subject of negotiation. Her Majesty's Government have been informed that such a concession has been acquired by an English Limited Company, and it is believed that these rights have been acquired subsequently to my statement of November, 1888. This information has been communicated to Her Majesty's Embassy at Berlin.
§ *MR. E. BECKETT
Are we to understand that there has been no surrender of British territory such as it was defined to be in the answer of the Secretary of State for the Colonies in November, 1888?
§ *THE UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir J. FERGUSSON,) Manchester, N. E.
Perhaps I may answer that question. It is quite evident that the description in 1888 was not strictly defined to the North or North-West; but what I am in a position to say is this, that should there be any fresh delimitation of territory, any rights acquired by British subjects in such districts would be borne in mind.