HC Deb 06 July 1903 vol 124 cc1387-8
MR. SCHWANN (Manchester, N.)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he has any further news concerning the military position in Northern Nigeria to communicate.

(Answered by Mr. Secretary Chamberlain.) The information received from Northern Nigeria since 22nd June, the date of the hon. Member's previous Question, is as follows:—Captain Sword, who had been reported as retiring to Bauchi, reached that place without opposition on the 23rd of May. Two days later, the Resident at Bauchi reported that the progress of the Ex-Sultan of Sokoto had been checked by the garrison at Gujba, and that a letter had been received from the Ex-Sultan, in which he stated that he did not wish to fight. On the 17th of June, the Acting High Commissioner reported from Zaria that he had had an interview with a native chief, who told him that he had left the Ex-Sultan at Burmi about the end of May, and that the Ex-Sultan's forces were dwindling rapidly, and that he had great difficulty in finding food for them, and for the large number of women and children with him. The Acting High Commissioner stated that the Ex-Sultan had written to the Resident at Bauchi, describing himself as "a fugitive," and asking to be allowed to travel, and that the Resident had replied that he must surrender unconditionally, but that his life would be spared. He adds that the disturbance was now confined to the small area to the north-east of Bauchi on the Gongola river, and his last telegram, received on 1st July, stated that the situation continued to improve. No further fighting has been reported.