§ MR. JOHN ELLIS (Nottinghamshire, Rushcliffe)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies when it is proposed to put the House in possession, by Parliamentary Papers, of an accurate Report of the statements made by the Secretary of State for the Colonies and others at the various meetings and interviews held by him with the representatives of the different political parties and subjects of the Crown in the self-governing colonies and other districts of South Africa. May I say what a satisfaction it is to see the right hon. Gentleman in his place once more?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE COLONIES (Mr. J. CHAMBERLAIN, Birmingham, W.)
I am much obliged to the hon. Gentleman: and, with reference to his Question, I would say that I must take it as a compliment that he seems to suggest that I should publish at the public expense a new volume of my speeches—which no doubt could be quoted hereafter. Of course, I have no personal objection: but it is a matter which would require some consideration, and it would be, I believe, an unusual precedent. I am ashamed to say that I believe the total number of speeches delivered by me during my recent tour amounted to something like seventy.
844 I had no time to read them at the time, much less to correct them, and I am afraid it would be rather difficult for me to correct them now, and that would also stand in the way of such a publication as the hon. Gentleman suggests. But possibly the best thing would be to leave the whole matter until the question is more fully discussed in the House, and if there are are any particular documents which the hon. Gentleman wishes to have published, I shall be glad to consider whether that can be done.
§ MR. JOHN ELLIS
I thank; the right hon. Gentleman, and will adopt his suggestion. There is, perhaps, something a little unprecedented in the journey altogether—a journey in the colonies during which the right hon. Gentleman spoke on behalf of the Ministry. It is, therefore, very desirable to have an authorised version of the speeches.