HC Deb 22 February 1901 vol 89 cc841-2

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether Sir Alfred Milner has prohibited the circulation in Cape Colony of the following publications: Truth, Reynolds's Newspaper, the Review of Reviews, and Lloyd's.


I beg also to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether Sir Alfred Milner has prohibited the circulation of the Dublin Weekly Freeman in Cape Colony; and, if so, on what ground that action has been taken; whether Sir Alfred Milner claims the right to forbid the circulation of any newspapers or periodicals in South Africa; and whether he claims a similar right as to sale or circulation of books or pamphlets; and, if so, on what law such claim is based.


The questions, as they refer to the action of the military authorities, should be addressed to me. I have nothing to add to what I said in answer to a question put yesterday by the hon. Member for Northampton. The Government will support Lord Kitchener in prohibiting the circulation of any newspapers in Cape Colony at the present moment which Lord Kitchener considers likely to have a bad effect, and to prejudice the early conclusion of the war.


The right hon. Gentleman has not answered my question whether Lord Kitchener or Sir A. Milner —Lord Kitchener, I presume—claims the right to prohibit the circulation of pamphlets and the sale of books. Further, I desire to ask, for the convenience of newspaper proprietors and booksellers in this country, whether the right hon. Gentleman will undertake to publish from week to week a list of publications prohibited from circulation in South Africa—an Index expurgatorius, in fact, so that newspaper proprietors and booksellers may be saved the useless expenditure of sending out such publications.


What I said in regard to newspapers certainly applies to books and pamphlets; and, as to an Index expurgatorius, if any communication is made to me by Lord Kitchener with regard to any publication I have no objection to having that communication made known in this country; but I will not trouble Lord Kitchener, occupied as he is, with a variety of questions upon such restrictions as he may think it right to place on the circulation of literature.

MR. T. M. HEALY (Louth, N.)

Will an Act of Indemnity to provide for this have to be passed by the Imperial or the Colonial Legislature?


Is this done in order to secure "equal rights" for all in South Africa?

[No answer was returned.]