§ MR. DAVITT
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether convicts are employed in the De Beers diamond mines at Kimberley, and are occasionally worked continuously for 12 hours? Whether he can say if the prisoners are convicted in local or distant courts; and whether, if such prisoners are so employed by a private company, he can state under what authority this is done?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE COLONIES
Convicts are employed in the De Beers mines. According to the returns, their hours of labour are from 9½ to 11 hours a day. I do not know whether they are convicted in local or distant courts. The convicts are employed by the company under an arrangement with the Cape Colonial Government, which has been in operation for the last 13 years.