HC Deb 25 February 1904 vol 130 cc1008-63

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That a Supplementary sum, not exceeding £2,700,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1904, for Additional Expenditure, in resspect of the following Army Services, viz.:—

Vote 1. Pay, etc., of the Army 2,000,000
Vote 6. Transport and Remounts 2,100,000
Vote 7. Provisions, Forage, and other Supplies 2,030,000
Total £6,130,000
Excess Appropriations-in-Aid (Votes 1,6,7,9, and 10) 3,430,000

MR. WHITLEY (Halifax)

said he wished to draw attention to the item relating to gratuities to troops for active service—£100,000. He found on reference to the original Estimate that the sum asked for on that ground was only £3,000, and he was bound to point out what a remarkable increase this Supplementary Estimate showed. Indeed, the Estimate throughout was extraordinary. The first line disclosed an increase of 15,000 per cent. on the original demand; the second an increase of 1,500 per cent. and the present item one of 3,000 per cent. The Secretary for War on the preceding Monday told them this sum was required wholly—or in large part at any rate—for the South African Constabulary. Did the right hon. Gentleman remember an occurrence in the House a year ago which caused no little excitement at the time? A Supplementary Estimate was presented for £1,000,000 sterling, which was to be paid to the Colonial Government in discharge of all liabilities with regard to the South African Constabulary. A misunderstanding arose in regard to it, with the result that the present Chancellor of the Exchequer—then Postmaster-General—gave an explanatory statement on the Report stage. In the first instance, on the 3rd March, when submitting the Vote, the Chancellor of the Exchequer said the Estimate represented a final adjustment and included all sums which the House would be asked to vote in connection with the administration of the Transvaal, but on the Report stage the following day the right hon. Gentleman said the Estimate represented a grant in aid of the colonial revenues in full discharge of all liabilities which would have fallen on the Government. And later on he added that the £1,000,000 was offered by the Government as a cash payment in discharge of all liabilities and it was accepted as such by Lord Milner, so that no further claim could be made on us. Now they were told that this was a new claim made by the South African Constabulary in respect of their military services, which entitled them to gratuities in the same way as ordinary troops. He held, however, that there was a clear and distinct pledge that under no circumstances should any further claim be made on this country in respect of the South African Constabulary. The £1 000,000 already paid was intended to cover everything, and it was even arranged that if there was a surplus it should not be returned to the Imperial Exchequer. If the South African Constabulary were entitled to the gratuity—and he did not deny that—it ought clearly to be paid out of the money voted by Parliament a year ago, and under these circumstances he moved the reduction of the Vote by £1,000.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That item, Vote 1, Sub-head H (Gratuities to the Troops for Active Service), be reduced by £1,000."—(Mr. Whitley.)

* SIR A. HAYTER (Walsall)

confessed that he also was astonished at this claim for gratuities. He agreed that the South African Constabulary deserved gratuities as much as the rest of the troops, but this was an enormous amount. It was almost incredible that they should amount to £10 per man, as they would be according to this Vote, even if the force had not been reduced from the original number asked for—10,000 to 7,000 men. He might mention that the original gratuity for the whole of the troops provided for in the 1902 Estimate only amounted to £350,000, and, therefore, the demand for so large a sum, as was now asked for, for one corps only was quite unintelligible. How did it come that this £100,000 was included in this Estimate? He thought the Committee were entitled to an explanation. If that amount was entirely for the South African Constabulary it was very much too large, or else it was very inaccurately described in the Estimate As "Gratuities to the troops for active service."


thought there was some misconception about the matter. The whole of the sum was not in respect of the Constabulary, but the principal part was for that purpose. The number of men was 10,000, and the average amount of the gratuity per man was £7 10s. The hon. Member for Halifax had asked why this sum had not been added to the £1,000,000. The two had nothing to do with one another. The sum of £1,000,000 was arrived at in respect of the pay and maintenance of the Constabulary. The view the Colonial Administration took was that 6,000 would be adequate, but the Home Government took the view that 10,000 should be maintained. After some correspondence with Lord Milner it was arranged to pay £1,000,000 in respect of these men. The war gratuity was not originally allotted to the Constabulary. It was not originally intended to give it to them, but it was afterwards decided that, in view of the services they had rendered, they should receive it. The hon. Gentleman was perfectly right in saying that the whole of the sum was not for this purpose. He thought £70,000 was for the South African Constabulary and the remainder for gratuities to men in other branches of the service. What the War Office had now to do was to make good their undertaking to pay the gratuity to the South African Constabulary whose claims were coming in from time to time.


asked the right hon. Gentleman to state the amount of the gratuity per man given to the troops.


said he could give the basis on which the gratuities were paid. It was £5 per man to privates, and to all the ranks above them the amounts varied acording to the ranks.


said that what they wanted to know was the average figure for each force.


said there was no doubt about that. It was £5.


said it appeared to him that this sum did not properly come under the Supplementary Estimate. It should be in the main Estimate, because it was really for a new service. The right hon. Gentleman had stated that it was not originally intended to give gratuities to the South African Constabulary, but he supposed that in the intervening period a different resolution was come to. That should have been specifically noted on the Supplementary Estimate. The right hon. Gentleman had said that the whole sum was not for that purpose, but so far as he himself could make out from the figures, four-fifths was for that purpose. This illustrated once more the hand-to-mouth way in which these Estimates were presented to the House of Commons. The Financial Secretary stated the other day that the preceding item, headed "Pay, etc., of the Corps of Imperial Yeomanry (South Africa)," included not only pay but gratuities, and here they were discussing an item which included not only gratuities to the Constabulary but gratuities to the troops on active service. He thought the Committee had a right to know what the purposes were for which they were asked to vote money. It was incumbent on the Department presenting the Estimate to the House to give the fullest and frankest information.


said what had happened was this. The House of Commons had agreed to the principle of paying gratuities, and it was a question for those who had the administration of them to say how they should be given. There was no new principle involved. He entirely demurred when the hon. Baronet said this item was an illustration of the laxness with which the accounts were kept. This was the first time we had had a war carried on with money provided by Estimates. In every previous war the expenditure had been by a Vote of Credit. He believed the attempt which had been made to conduct the recent war by a system of Estimates which the House of Commons could appreciate had been successful. This having been done they were met now with criticism on the smallest points. He admitted that there I had been delay in bringing up the accounts, but it was not because the War Office desired that there should be postponement. It was because of the exigencies in connection with the winding up of a great campaign. He thought they might with some advantage forego these minute criticisms of the details of remnants of accounts of three or four years back. The hon. Gentleman opposite seemed to suggest that there had been a sort of Lâche on his part, or on the part of the Department. The War Office authorities had given their very best attention to the overtaking of the enormous task which had been devolved upon them during the war. They were as competent as the officials of any other Department. They had done what he was quite certain had never been accomplished by the Financial Department of any other War Office in the world.


said the right hon. Gentleman had given the Committee an admirable illustration of "the poacher turned gamekeeper." While he sat below the Gangway there was no one fuller of small and cavilling criticisms than the right hon. Gentleman.


I do honestly say that during the time the war was going on I did not make those criticisms.


said that whether it was war time or not they had a duty to perform. The war was over now at last. It was over according to the right hon. Gentleman and his friends a long time ago. The right hon. Gentleman deprecated criticism, and said that all those criticisms were futile and so forth. [An HON. MEMBER: So they are.] They were, he quite admitted, inconvenient to him. Then the right hon. Gentleman said what an admirable staff the War Office had! He quite agreed with the right hon. Gentleman, but why were they admirable? Because they were always liable to "futile" criticisms on the part of the House of Commons, and if there was any falling off in the financial scrutiny of the public Departments the fault lay with the House of Commons, on account of the House not carrying on its proper function of liberty of criticism in these cases. The right hon. Gentleman could not deny that within the last two or three days his hon. friends behind him who had been examining these items had discovered a number of very strange proceedings. The right hon. Gentleman considered that the explanations he had given were satisfactory, but it was the duty of his hon. friends to exercise their functions by making these-criticisms. It was the system of close criticism that kept things straight. This new optimistic tone did not come well from the right hon. Gentleman. It was that tone which was more likely to lower the proper administration of public offices than any other.

MR. TREVELYAN (Yorkshire, W.R., Elland)

said the praise bestowed by the Secretary for War on the Financial Department of his office was rather excessive. It was very easy during a war to make excessive Estimates. He remembered when the South African war was coming to a conclusion the War Department asked something like £30,000,000 to carry on the war, when it was supposed that it would go on for six months. No one could reasonably suppose that on this occasion the War Office had made up the Estimates carefully. The truth was that the War Office went on the system of taking a large margin indeed, but in every case there had had to be Supplementary Estimates. The right hon. Gentleman the other day said that the Estimates had invariably been exceeded.


I said exactly the contrary; that the amount spent was under the Estimate.


said that in this case there was a definite new expenditure which the Committee was not led to expect. He did not know what the reason was why the special gratuities to this corps were omitted in the first instance, and now decided to be given. He supposed it was that the Constabulary were to be given the disagreeable duty of chasing escaped Chinese servants.


I said that the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State for War had declared that this was the first war that had been conducted under a system of Estimates, and not under a Vote of Credit. The right hon. Gentleman was wrong. It was true that in the case of a small war against a savage country the system of Vote of Credit was used, but it was not in the case of great wars. For instance, in the war with Napoleon there was a Vote of Credit to begin with, but the rest of the war was always carried on on the system of Estimates. The right hon. Gentleman said that this new system, as he thought it to be, was adopted to be in accordance with the views of the House of Commons. He did not think there had been any expression of opinion on the subject in the House of Commons. It was adopted, no doubt with the best intention, to give greater control to the House of Commons over expenditure. But he did not believe that it had had that result. When the Secretary of State for War talked of minute criticism, might he remind the right hon. Gentleman of the circumstance that in the Public Accounts Committee it was avowed by the financial authority of the War Office that, in respect of the expenditure by officers in the field in the way of purchases, they could not tell what that was within a million or two. That seemed to him to show that the system of estimating in advance had been a failure. Perhaps that was because there was no machinery for it. It might be that they wanted an entirely new constitution for their financial arrangements in time of war; and that the Commander-in-Chief should have a sort of double to take charge of the financial arrangements. He though it might be a matter for serious consideration whether when—which God forbid—we came across another big war, the old or the new system should be adopted.


said that the hon. Member for King's Lynn had stated that the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State for War was wrong when he alleged that this was the first time that the expenses of a war had been provided for by Estimates. Now, the Report for the year 1902 of the Public Accounts Committee, of which the hon. Gentleman was a member, stated that— In deference to the wishes of the Treasury, the war expenditure has been met for the first time by Estimate, and not by Vote of Credit, and that in attempting to do so, for the better information of Parliament, great latitude must be allowed, both in bringing to account within the proper year, and in estimating in detail for each separate Vote and Sub-head. That opinion was repeated in the last Report of the Public Accounts Committee, which stated that— In adopting the plan of proceeding by Estimates, and not by Vote of Credit, in deference to the wishes of the Treasury, the War Office must, in the opinion of your Committee, be allowed considerable latitude both in bringing the expenditure to account within the proper year, and in estimating in detail for each separate Vote and Sub-head. He respectfully suggested that the point raised by the hon. Gentleman was rather small and minute, but if any further explanation was required he would be glad to give it. We were now at the end of the greatest war ever conducted, or attempted to be conducted, under circumstances in which, in the opinion of the Financial Department of the War Office, it could not be conducted, viz., under Estimates. They protested that it was practically impossible to conduct a war on Estimates, but their protest was over-ruled, and for four years the Government had done their best to prove that they were mistaken. This was an absolutely unprecedented war, conducted in unprecedented circumstances, and at an unprecedented distance from this country, at a cost of over £200,000,000, and he asked the Committee to make allowance for some little miscalculation and for small unforeseen expenditure.


said he could assure the hon. Gentleman that they were trying not to be too hard on the Financial Department of the War Office. He himself had only ventured to utter a word of protest against the way the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary for War had met their endeavour to extract information. It struck him that the right hon. Gentleman had already inherited a great deal of the spirit of his predecessor in the office of Secretary of State for War; and he would remind the right hon. Gentleman that the House of Commons was not a "Chinese compound." They had a right to ask for information on these items, and when the Government came down day after day for millions for the public service, they would continue to inquire and to criticise. He did not believe that this was a trifling matter—voting money with both hands, and the attitude of the right hon. Gentleman was not becoming to him. The right hon. Gentleman would get his money faster by adopting a different attitude than that which he had adopted just now. The Secretary for War had said that the war had been conducted for the first time on the system of Estimates; but he agreed with the hon. Member for King's Lynn that a lump sum might have been better than Estimates. The right hon. Gentleman said that the war was over; but last year when these Estimates were framed these items were not brought in as they should have been. Attention had been drawn to three or four consecutive Supplementary Estimates which showed an increase of 1,000 per cent. on the original Estimate. It was due to the Committee that they should have some explanation of that, and sufficient explanation had not been given. He was still of opinion that these items ought never to have been brought in on this Vote at all.

MR. COURTENAY WARNER (Staffordshire, Lichfield)

said he quite agreed that some latitude ought to be given to the War Office in regard to their Estimates, but there were limits when every Vote one came to, was found to be largely out, not to a small extent, but two or three times the original Estimate. That was going beyond reasonable latitude. If the Estimates were to be drawn in this loose and careless fashion, it would be better to bring in a lump sum. He did not find fault with the Financial Department of the War Office on this occasion, but what he wanted to know was how it was that the Constabulary were now allotted to receive a gratuity? They had been fighting all through the war. Some of them were the first troops to be engaged, and their claims should have been considered earlier. The war had been over eighteen months, and surely it did not take anything like that time to decide who were entitled to gratuities and who were not. That was in the ordinary routine of the War Office business; there was no difficulty in deciding it. It was quite true that these men were paid at a much higher rate than our own soldiers, but so were the Colonials, and surely the War Office could have decided earlier that these men were entitled to gratuities. There was no reason why this item should not have come upon the ordinary Estimates last year. He wanted to know why the decision to give gratuities to the Constabulary had not been come to earlier, and why some part, at least, of these gratuities had not been paid out of the £1,000,000 voted last year.

MR. MALCOLM (Suffolk, Stowmarket)

said that the speech of the hon. Gentleman who had last spoken was a very good example of how the time of the House of Commons could be wasted. The hon. Gentleman asked why the troops who were employed the earliest were not paid the earliest.


said he did not ask that Question.


said it seemed to be quite immaterial to the hon. Gentleman that the force which was now to be paid was not in existence at the time he supposed it was. He thought the explanation of the Financial Secretary to the War Office was perfectly satisfactory. The hon. Gentleman admitted that there was an oversight at a time of very strenuous work, and he. acknowledged it just as "a poacher turned gamekeeper" would acknowledge it. It was no part of his business to defend the War Office; but he did not see that there was any occasion for the present attack. If British infantry or cavalry were being kept out of their gratuities hon. Gentlemen opposite would be the very first to complain about it. It was perfectly reasonable to expect such an oversight as had occurred, during a period of a great war; and if hon. Gentlemen opposite wished the House of Commons to proceed as the Public Accounts Committee advised by way of Estimates instead of by Votes of Credit they were doing their best to prevent it. The House of Commons ought to be protected against such a display of financial pedantry, and it ought to be allowed to proceed with its business. There had been laxity under circumstances of unprecedented difficulty. He thought that the Report of the Public Accounts Committee entirely disposed of the contention of the hon. Gentleman for King's Lynn. The change in procedure which was now adopted was extremely satisfactory, and was a great improvement on the old method. He certainly would support the War Office.

MR. RUNCIMAN (Dewsbury)

said that he respected the loyalty of the hon. Gentleman to the permanent officials when he indulged in a defence of the Financial Department of the War Office; but the right hon. Gentleman had admitted that that Department was not what it should be, and he added that the remedy which ought to be applied, and which he thought would shortly be applied, was to provide a proper financial staff. Therefore the right hon. Gentleman should not resent hon. Members on that side of the House expressing a similar opinion. The hon. Gentleman who had just spoken was altogether mistaken regarding the functions of the House of Commons. He appeared to think that it was improper for hon. Gentlemen to discuss small details. The war cost £250,000,000, but even still they had regard to such a comparatively small sum as £100,000, and they objected to the Vote being brought on at that time of day. As long as these Supplementary Estimates continued to be introduced there would be a feeling that they had not yet got to the end of the job. He was not at all sure that when the right hon. Gentleman submitted the Army Estimates that the House of Commons would not be asked to clear up more accounts. He wished to ask a Question of the right hon. Gentleman with regard to the distribution of the gratuities to officers who had served in South Africa. He understood that an officer holding a staff appointment was granted the gratuity of his substantive rank in a case where the staff appointment would only have entitled him to a smaller gratuity. Be wished to know whether regimental officers who were given local and temporary rank received similar advantage. For instance, a regimental captain appointed as staff-lieutenant would be entitled to £60 gratuity, whereas a regimental lieutenant appointed to the rank of local captain would only be entitled to £27 10s. That was a great inequality, and he hoped the right hon. Gentleman would inquire into it.


said that only £350,000 was taken in last year's Estimates and £3,000 in the Supplementary Estimates for gratuities. He wished to know where the remainder of the money came from.


said the difference was taken out of another Vote.

MR. BUCHANAN (Perthshire, E.)

said he thought he could help the hon. Gentleman out of his difficulty. Last year the Secretary of State for War took no less than £2,250,000 for gratuities. He respectfully demurred to the Secretary of State for War denouncing perfectly honest and straightforward criticisms. The criticisms were twofold. In the first place the charge should have been foreseen, and, in the second place, the Estimate was really a new item. The right hon. Gentleman himself had admitted that. He said it was not originally intended to give the South African Constabulary gratuities for military service, but that a decision to the contrary had been arrived at. They had a right to ask on what grounds that decision was arrived at, and why it was not stated on the Estimate that it was a perfectly new charge.


said that last year the Secretary of State for War took £3,000,000 for gratuities which was spent on other purposes.


asked when the decision was arrived at.


said he could not answer the hon. Gentleman's Question about officers' gratuities, but the decision to pay gratuities to the South African Constabulary was arrived at in June, 1902.


asked, if it was arrived at in June, 1902, why it did not appear in last year's Estimates.


said he had previously explained the matter. The money began to be paid immediately the decision was arrived at, but it could not be all paid in one day. The payment occupied many months. The fact that the money was being paid had nothing to do with the question of accounting, as it could not be brought into account until it had all been checked and regulated. The result was that the money was not brought into account during the year. Under their existing system of finance, money which was actually paid during one year had to be voted the next year. It was a perfectly familiar transaction, and one which took place in every branch of the public service. A large part of the money was spent in 1902. but it was not brought into account during that year, and the money afterwards appropriated for it was spent on other purposes.


said he thought the right hon. Gentleman did not quite comprehend his Question. What he referred to was not the appropriation of the money but the estimating of the amount. In June, 1902, the War Office knew that gratuities were to be paid to the South African Constabulary. They also knew the number of men that would receive such gratuities, and he could not understand why they did not put the money down on the Estimates.


said the Estimates were made up in October, but the accounts for the previous year did not close until the month of November, and the Estimates had to be made without knowing what accounts might be brought in up to the following October. That, he thought, was the explanation of what seemed to be a very puzzling feature on the face of the accounts.

MR. SYDNEY BUXTON (Tower Hamlets, Poplar)

said the explanation of the right hon. Gentleman met some of the points which had been urged with regard to other items, but it did not at all touch the particular question under discussion. In June, 1902, it was known that these gratuities were going to be paid, and the number of men entitled to receive them, and between June and October there was ample time to place before the House the exact facts of the case. The point of the complaint was not the question of whether the money was to be paid within a particular period, but the fact that, by their not being brought into account in the year, it was taken altogether out of the power of the House to criticise these gratuities. He had come to the conclusion that it was perfectly useless for the House of Commons to attempt to exercise any control over War Office Estimates. He had listened with astonishment when the Financial Secretary stated that the Treasury had insisted that the War Office should make Estimates and not take a Vote on account, and the War Office had declared they were incapable of doing what the Treasury required. When such relations existed between two Departments it was not surprising that these extraordinary Supplementary Estimates should be introduced. The Committee were entitled to some explanation of why the Treasury insisted on the War Office carrying out a financial operation which that Department declared themselves to be incompetent to perform.


said the hon. Member had asked why, if it was known that these gratuities would become due, they were not included in the original Estimate. As a matter of fact, a very large sum had already been voted by Parliament for gratuities, and it was not known for many months how much of the £3,000,000 which had been set aside would be required. It was thought that that sum would be ample. Claims for gratuities had been coming in daily for months, but at the time there was no anticipation that the sum available would not be amply sufficient. He did not know why this particular war was made the occasion for trying this new system; nor did he recognise the hon. Member's description of internecine war between the two Departments because the Treasury had insisted on a course which the War Office thought there would be difficulty in following. It was decided to make the experiment—he believed with the entire concurrence of the Public Accounts Committee, and the experiment had been made with results which were, or were not, satisfactory according to the point of view of hon. Members.

Question put.

The Committee divided:—Ayes, 127; Noes, 184. (Division List No. 18.)

Abraham, William (Cork, N.E.) Fuller, J. M. F. Pirie, Duncan V.
Ainsworth, John Stirling Gilhooly, James Power, Patrick Joseph
Ashton, Thomas Gair Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herb. John Price, Robert John
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Goddard, Daniel Ford Priestley, Arthur
Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire) Harwood, George Rea, Russell
Beaumont, Wentworth C. B. Hayden, John Patrick Reddy, M.
Blake, Edward Hayter, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur D. Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Boland, John Hemphill, Rt. Hon. Charles H. Redmond, William (Clare)
Brigg, John Humphreys-Owen, Arthur C. Robertson, Edmund (Dundee)
Broadhurst, Henry Hutchinson, Dr. Charles Fredk. Robson, William Snowdon
Bryce, Rt. Hon. James Johnson, John (Gateshead) Roche, John
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Jones, D. Brynmor (Swansea) Rose, Charles Day
Burke, E. Haviland- Jones, William (Carnarvonshire) Runciman, Walter
Burns, John Joyce, Michael Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland).
Buxton, Sydney Charles Kilbride, Denis Schwann, Charles E.
Caldwell, James Layland-Barratt, Francis Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Cameron, Robert Leese, Sir Jos. F. (Accrington) Sheehy, David
Campbell, John (Armagh, S.) Leng, Sir John Shipman, Dr. John G.
Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Logan, John William Sinclair, John (Forfarshire)
Causton, Richard Knight Lundon, W. Slack, John Bamford
Condon, Thomas Joseph MacNeill, John Gordon Swift Spencer, Rt. Hn. C. R (Northants
Crean, Eugene M'Arthur, William (Cornwall) Sullivan, Donal
Crombie, John William M'Hugh, Patrick A. Tennant, Harold John
Crooks, William M'Kenna, Reginald Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E).
Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen) Mansfield, Horace Rendall Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.)
Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan) Mooney, John J. Thomson, F. W. (York, W. R.)
Delany, William Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen) Tomkinson, James
Devlin, Chas. Ramsay (Galway) Murphy, John Toulmin, George
Devlin, Joseph (Kilkenny, N.) Nannetti, Joseph P. Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Newnes, Sir George Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Donelan, Captain A. Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South) Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)
Doogan, P. C. Norton, Capt. Cecil William Wason, Jn. Cathcart (Orkney)
Douglas, Charles M. (Lanark) O'Brien, James F. X. (Cork) White, Luke (York, E. R.)
Duncan, J. Hastings O'Brien, Patrick. (Kilkenny) Williams, Osmond (Merioneth)
Elibank, Master of O'Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.) Wilson, Fred. W. (Norfolk. Mid.)
Ellis, John Edward (Notts. O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W.) Wilson, John (Durham, Mid.)
Esmonde, Sir Thomas O'Donnell, John (Mayo, S.) Woodhouse, Sir J.T(Huddersf'd
Farquharson, Dr. Robert O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.) Young, Samuel
Fenwick, Charles O'Dowd, John Yoxall, James Henry
Ferguson, R. C. Munro (Leith) O'Malley, William
Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmond O'Mara, James TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr. Whitley and Mr. Soares.
Flavin, Michael Joseph O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Flynn, James Christopher Palmer, Sir Chas. M. (Durham)
Freeman-Thomas, Captain F. Partington, Oswald
Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Beach, Rt. Hn. Sir Mich. Hicks Coghill, Douglas Harry
Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel Bignold, Arthur Cohen, Benjamin Louis
Allhusen, Augustus Hen. Eden Blundell, Colonel Henry Colston, Chas. Edw. H. Athole
Allsopp, Hon. George Bond, Edward Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge
Anson, Sir William Reynell Bowles, Lt.-Col. H.F (Middlesex Crossley, Rt. Hon. Sir Savile
Arnold-Forster, Rt. Hn. Hugh O. Bowles, T. Gibson (King's Lynn Cubitt, Hon. Henry
Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John Brodrick, Rt. Hon. St. John Cust, Henry John C.
Bagot, Capt. Josceline FitzRoy Bull, William James Dalkeith, Earl of
Bailey, James (Walworth) Campbell, Rt. Hn. J.A.(Glasgow) Dalrymple, Sir Charles
Bain, Colonel James Robert Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Davenport, William Bromley
Baird, John George Alexander Cavendish, V.C.W. (Derbyshire Denny, Colonel
Balcarres, Lord Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J.A(Wore Dickinson, Robert Edmond
Balfour, Rt. Hon. G. W. (Leeds) Clive, Captain Percy A. Dickson, Charles Scott
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Coates, Edward Feetham Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers-
Bartley, Sir George C. T. Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Doxford, Sir William Theodore
Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin Coddington, Sir William Duke, Henry Edward
Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin Lawson, Jn. G. (Yorks., N. R.) Round, Rt. Hon. James
Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas Lee, A. H. (Hants., Fareham) Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool)
Faber, Edmund B. (Hants, W.) Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-
Faber, George Denison (York) Leveson-Gower, Frederick N.S. Sadler, Col. Samuel Alexander
Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst Lockwood, Lieut.-Col. A. R. Sandys, Lt.-Col. Thos. Myles
Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne Long, Col. Chas. W. (Evesham) Saunderson, Rt. Hn. Col. Edw.
Fitzroy, Hon. Edward Algernon Long, Rt. Hon. W. (Bristol, S.) Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)
Flannery, Sir Fortescue Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft) Sharpe, William Edward T.
Flower, Sir Ernest Lucas, Reginald J.(Portsmouth Simeon, Sir Barrington
Forster, Henry William Macdona, John Cumming Sloan, Thomas Henry
Fyler, John Arthur Maconochie, A. W. Smith, Abel H.(Hertford, East)
Galloway, William Johnson M'Calmont, Colonel James Smith, H. C (North'mb Tyneside.
Gardner, Ernest Malcolm, Ian Smith, James Parker (Lanarks)
Godson, Sir Augustus Fredk. Manners, Lord Cecil Smith, Hon. W. F. D. (Strand)
Gore, Hn. S.F. Ormsby-(Linc) Maxwell, W. J. H. (Dumfriessh. Spencer, Sir E. (W. Bromwich)
Gorst, Rt. Hn. Sir John Eldon Milvain, Thomas Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Lancs.)
Goschen, Hon. George Joachim Mitchell, Edw. (Fermanagh, N.) Stock, James Henry
Goulding, Edward Alfred Morrell, George Herbert Stroyan, John
Graham, Henry Robert Morrison, James Archibald Talbot, Rt. Hn. J.G(Oxf'd Univ.
Greene, Sir E.W.(B'rySEdm'nd Morton, Arthur H. Aylmer Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)
Greene, W. Raymond-(Cambs.) Mount, William Arthur Thornton, Percy M.
Grenfell, William Henry Mowbray, Sir Robert Gray C. Tollemache, Henry James
Hall, Edward Marshall Murray, Rt. Hon. A. G. (Bute) Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.
Hamilton, Marq of (L'nd'nderry Murray, Charles J. (Coventry) Tuff, Charles
Hare, Thomas Leigh Murray, Col. Wyndham (Bath) Tufnell, Lieut.-Col. Edward
Harris, F. Leverton (Tynem'th) Newdegate, Francis A. N. Valentia, Viscount
Haslam, Sir Alfred S. Nicholson, William Graham Walrond, Rt. Hn. Sir William H.
Haslett, Sir James Horner O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens Warde, Colonel C. E.
Heath, A. Howard (Hanley) Pease, Herbt. Pike (Darlington) Welby, Lt.-Col. A.C.E.(Taunton)
Heath, James (Staffords., N.W.) Peel, Hn. Wm. Robert Wellesley Welby, Sir Chas. G. E. (Notts.)
Heaton, John Henniker Pemberton, John S. G. Whiteley, H.(Ashton und. Lyne)
Hermon-Hodge, Sir Robert T. Percy, Earl Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Hickman, Sir Alfred Pilkington, Colonel Richard Willox, Sir John Archibald
Hoare, Sir Samuel Platt-Higgins, Frederick Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E.R.
Hoult, Joseph Plummer, Walter R. Wilson, John (Glasgow)
Howard, J. (Kent, Faversham) Powell, Sir Francis Sharp Wilson-Todd, Sir W. H. (Yorks.)
Howard, J. (Midd., Tottenham) Pretyman, Ernest George Wodehouse, Rt. Hn. E. R. (Bath)
Hozier, Hn. James Henry Cecil Pryce-Jones, Lt.-Col. Edward Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm
Hunt, Rowland Rasch, Sir Frederic Carne Wortley, Rt. Hn. C. B. Stuart-
Kennaway, Rt. Hn. Sir John H. Ratcliff, R. F. Wylie, Alexander
Kenyon, Hn. Geo. T. (Denbigh) Reid, James (Greenock) Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop) Remnant, James Farquharson
Kerr, John Renwick, George TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood
Kimber, Henry Ridley, S. Forde (Bethnal Green
Knowles, Sir Lees Ritchie, Rt. Hn. Chas. Thomson and Mr. Ailwyn Fellowes.
Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow) Rolleston, Sir John F. L.
Lawrence, Sir Jos. (Monmouth) Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert

Original Question again proposed.


said he wished to ask a question about item K, "Pay, Wages, etc., of Army Service Corps Subordinate Establishments, £230,000."No information was given in the Estimate, but he had gathered that this was another South African charge. In the last general Estimates they were led to believe that they were voting the nominal charges in time of peace. There had been a large charge for war purposes, and until the other day they believed that the country had returned to the ordinary normal expenditure of the Army. Now they were told that it was necessary to double that charge, and that it was due to further expenditure in South Africa, and to the retention of native employees in connection with military services. He should like to know whether the increased South African charge was in any degree due to the alteration of policy announced in July last as regarded the permanent retention of a much larger force than had been contemplated when the Estimates were introduced by the Secretary of State for India. He moved the reduction of the Vote by £1,000.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Item, Vote 1, Sub-head K (Pay, Wages, etc., of Army Service Corps. Subordinate Establishments), be reduced by £1,000."—(Mr. Buchanan.)


explained that this money was paid almost entirely for the building of barracks for the troops in South Africa, to natives and others for carrying materials. The General Officer Commanding must have omitted this charge from his estimate, and it had become necessary to provide it in this way.


asked if it was likely that next year they would get back to something like the normal charge.


Yes, if the building operations are completed.

MR. SOARES (Devonshire, Barnstaple)

asked if the hon. Member could inform the Committee how many natives were employed on this work, as it would affect the Chinese labour question.


said this money was not only payment for carrying materials, but for the erection of hutments. Had this money been spent strictly in materials or had some of it gone in wages?


replied it was thought at first that the original estimate included the cost of transport, civilian drivers, and civilian workmen employed on the buildings, but owing to a mistake the estimate did not include those charges and they were obliged to ask for them now.


said it was extraordinary that an item of £230,000 had been omitted by an officer in South Africa, and had not been detected by the War Office.


said that very serious complaints as to the housing of the troops had come from South Africa, and it would give great satisfaction if they could have a clear statement that this work was nearly completed, and that the conditions under which the troops were housed would be very shortly much improved.


said the question of the housing of the troops was very important, and he had given much attention to it, but it was hardly ½one which arose upon this Vote, although if it was in order he was perfectly prepared to go into it.

Question put, and negatived.

Original Question again proposed.


pointed out that the original Estimate for the Reserves was £680,000 for 80,000 men. The right hon. Gentleman had said there would be a considerable shortage in the Reserve. and he took only £480,000 for 70,000 men, or £200,000 less than the original Estimate. That had the effect of falsifying the amount they had to pay for the Reserves.


replied that the men had passed into the Reserve earlier than was expected, and the result was an excess. He thought that was a matter for congratulation. The Reserve was short, and he was glad that this increment had taken place.


said that the item for the China Expeditionary Force was in some respects new, for he would not be liable to the reply from the Treasury Bench that this sum had to do with South African expenditure. In the first place, the respect in which this item bore an unhappy resemblance was that they had this year, as well as last year, an amount almost identically the same as the original Estimate. He ventured to say it did not show very good financial work on the part of the War Office. Referring to the item of £135,000 for "Pay, etc., of the China Expeditionary Force," the hon. Member said the Committee should bear in mind that the Report of the Auditor-General for 1902–3 gave the total amount for that Expedition as £1,807,000. They had not in their possession the Army Appropriation Accounts for the year ending 31st March last, and, therefore, they did not know what had been spent for that year. He thought it would certainly be within the mark to say that considerably over £2,000,000 had been spent on the China Expeditionary Force. The sum now in the the Supplementary Estimate ought to have been foreseen and inserted in the general Estimates of the year. The note at the end of the Supplementary Estimate said— The gross sum of £400,000 is required in connection with the China Expeditionary Force, owing to the accounts for 1902–3 having been received too late to be brought to account in that year. These charges are, however, to the extent of £200,000, met by surplus Appropriations-in-aid, due to arrear receipts in respect of the same period. He did not think that, together with the statement of the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State for War on the opening night of this discussion, was an adequate explanation either of this particular item or of the way these sums of money were charged. This expedition was undertaken by the Indian Army, and the cost was to be paid for, not out of the Indian Exchequer, but out of the Imperial Exchequer. He ventured to say that there was more than a probability that the delay in settling the accounts was much more likely to be due to difficulties here at home than in India. He reminded the Committee that in connection with the Abyssinian Expedition which was carried on by Indian troops, at the cost of the Imperial Government, it was more than twelve years before the Indian Government could get full payment of the money it had expended. He could not see why the Government did not enter an adequate sum in the Estimates last year to meet these claims. The House knew that communications had been constantly going on, in the course of last year, between the home Government and the Indian Government. On 18th March last a military member of the Indian Council stated that a few battalions of the Indian Army were still employed in Northern China at the cost of the home Government, and he added that the administration of the force had been taken over by the War Office. That showed clearly that the home Government must have foreseen that a charge of this sort would come in for payment in the year drawing to a close. Was the present item to be final or not? He would be pleased to find that there was no further sum inserted in the Estimates for the China Expeditionary Force. There were still a number of Indian troops there. Was there to be no charge for them put on the Estimates for the year? He moved to reduce the Vote by £1,000.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Item, Vote 1, Sub-head AA (Pay, &c, of the China Expeditionary Force), be reduced by £1,000."—(Mr. Buchanan.,)


said it was really satisfactory to learn from the hon. Gentleman that the War Office had reduced the period of accounting between the Indian Government and ourselves from twelve to something like two years. The hon. Gentleman had said he did not understand why this account should come in now. He had satisfied himself, and he thought he could satisfy the Committee, that it was not very material. This was an expedition conducted many thousands of miles away. It was conducted under conditions which were quite uncertain at the time. No one knew what the development of the campaign might be, and no one could anticipate the development that took place. An Estimate was made by the War Office of the cost of the expedition. The estimated cost was £6,600,000, and the expenditure had been £6,121,000. The hon. Member had asked why that was so. The answer was very simple. In the early stages of the war the War Office provided for all emergencies and took Estimamates in excess of the actual amount that could be expended in that year. There was a very large excess taken in the two-years 1900–1 and 1901–2, but the expenditure was not sufficiently quickly brought to account, and considerable sums were returned to the Treasury. The result had been that the sums which were voted as necessary for the expedition and not expended in those years had to be re-voted, and now a portion was to be re-voted this evening. The hon. Member had asked why delay had taken place, and had suggested that because they had had communications with the Indian Government they might have expedited the issue of the accounts. If he remembered rightly, it was the Public Accounts Committee that suggested that the accounts should be audited in India. As a matter of fact, they were not presented at a time when they could be brought within the ordinary Estimates for the year. This was not in the true sense a Supplementary Estimate at all. It was not a payment in excess of the original Estimate for the whole expedition. It was delayed payment. The actual expenditure had been less than the money voted by Parliament. As to the question whether this was a final Estimate, he had to say that it was final with respect to the expedition, but there were still troops in China, and, of course, as long as

there were troops there to guard the railway there must be a charge. That would be brought up in the ordinary way, and would be subject to the hon. Member's criticism.

Question put.

The Committee divided:—Ayes, 136; Noes, 187. (Division List No. 19.)

Abraham, (William Cork, N.E.) Furness, Sir Christopher Power, Patrick, Joseph
Atherley-Jones, L. Gilhooly, James Price, Robert John
Austin, Sir John Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herb. John Priestley, Arthur
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Goddard, Daniel Ford Reddy, M.
Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire) Harwood, George Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Beaumont, Wentworth, C. B. Hayden, John Patrick Redmond, William (Clare)
Bell, Richard Hayter, Rt. Hn. Sir Arthur D. Robertson, Edmund (Dundee)
Blake, Edward Hemphill, Rt. Hon. Charles H. Robson, William Snowdon
Boland, John Humphreys-Owen, Arthur C. Roche, John
Brigg, John Hutchinson, Dr. Charles Fredk. Rose, Charles Day
Broadhurst, Henry Johnson, John (Gateshead) Runciman, Walter
Brown, George M.(Edinburgh) Jones, D. Brynmor (Swansea) Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)
Bryce, Rt. Hon. James Jones, William (Carnarvonshire Schwann, Charles E.
Burke, E. Haviland- Joyce, Michael Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Burns, John Kilbride, Denis Sheehy, David
Buxton, Sydney Charles Labouchere, Henry Shipman, Dr. John G.
Caldwell, James Layland-Barratt, Francis Sinclair, John (Forfarshire)
Cameron, Robert Leese, Sir Jos. F. (Accrington) Slack, John Bamford
Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Leng, Sir John Soares, Ernest J.
Causton, Richard Knight Logan, John William Spencer, Rt. Hn. C. R (Northants)
Condon, Thomas Joseph Lundon, W. Stevenson, Francis S.
Crean, Eugene M'Arthur, William (Cornwall) Sullivan, Donal
Crombie, John William M'Hugh, Patrick A. Tennant, Harold John
Crooks, William M'Kenna, Reginald Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.)
Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen) Mansfield, Horace Rendall Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.
Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan) Mooney, John J. Thomson, F. W. (York, W. R.)
Delany, William Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen) Tomkinson, James
Devlin, Chas. Ramsay (Galway) Murphy, John Toulmin, George
Devlin, Joseph (Kilkenny, N.) Nannetti, Joseph P. Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Newnes, Sir George Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Donelan, Captain A. Nolan, Col. John P. (Galway, N.) Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)
Doogan, P. C. Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South) Wason, Jn. Cathcart (Orkney)
Douglas, Charles M. (Lanark) Norton, Capt. Cecil William White, Luke (York, E. R.)
Duncan, J. Hastings O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Elibank, Master of O'Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.) Williams, Osmond (Merioneth)
Ellis, John Edward (Notts.) O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W. Wilson, Fred. W.(Norfolk, Mid.
Esmonde, Sir Thomas O'Donnell, John (Mayo, S.) Wilson, John (Durham, Mid.)
Farquharson, Dr. Robert O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.) Woodhouse, Sir J.T(Huddersf' d)
Fenwick, Charles O'Dowd, John Young, Samuel
Ferguson, R. C. Munro (Leith) O'Malley, William Yoxall, James Henry
Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmond O'Mara, James
Flavin, Michael Joseph O'Shaughnessy, P. J. TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Ainsworth.
Flynn, James Christopher Palmer, Sir Chas. M. (Durham)
Foster, Sir Walter (Derby Co.) Partington, Oswald
Fuller, J. M. F. Pirie, Duncan V.
Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John Banbury, Sir Frederick George
Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel Bailey, James (Walworth) Bartley, Sir George C. T.
Allhusen, Augustus Hen. Eden Bain, Colonel James Robert Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin
Allsopp, Hon. George Baird, John George Alexander Beach, Rt. Hn. Sir Mich. Hicks
Anson, Sir William Reynell Balcarres, Lord Bignold, Arthur
Arnold-Forster, Rt. Hn. Hugh O. Balfour, Rt. Hon. G. W. (Leeds) Blundell, Colonel Henry
Boulnois, Edmund Haslam, Sir Alfred S. Pilkington, Colonel Richard
Bowles, Lt.-Col. H. F. (Middlesex) Haslett, Sir James Horner Platt-Higgins. Frederick
Bowles, T. Gibson(King's Lynn Hatch, Ernest Frederick Geo. Plummer, Walter R.
Brodrick, Rt. Hon. Sir John Heath, A. Howard (Hanley) Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Bull, William James Heath, James (Staffords., N.W.) Pretyman, Ernest George
Burdett-Coutts, W. Heaton, John Henniker Pryce-Jones, Lt.-Col. Edward
Campbell, Rt. Hn. J.A.(Glasgow) Hermon-Hodge, Sir Robert T. Rasch, Sir Frederic Carne
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hickman, Sir Alfred Reid, James (Greenock)
Cavendish, R. F. (N. Lancs.) Hoare, Sir Samuel Remnant, James Farquharson
Cavendish, V. C. W. (Derbyshire) Hobhouse, Rt. Hn. H. (Somers't, E.) Renwick, George
Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. A (Worc) Hoult, Joseph Ritchie, Rt. Hn. Chas. Thomson
Clive, Captain Percy A. Howard, J. (Kent, Faversham) Rollit, Sir Albert Kaye
Coates, Edward Feetham Hozier, Hn. James Henry Cecil Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Hunt, Rowland Round, Rt. Hon. James
Coddington, Sir William Kennaway, Rt. Hn. Sir John H. Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool)
Cohen, Benjamin Louis Kenyon, Hn. Geo. T. (Denbigh) Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-
Colston, Chas. Edw. H. Athole Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop.) Sadler, Col. Samuel Alexander
Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge Kerr, John Sandys, Lt.-Col. Thos. Myles
Crossley, Rt. Hon. Sir Savile Kimber, Henry Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)
Cubitt, Hon. Henry Knowles, Sir Lees Sharpe, William Edward T.
Dalkeith, Earl of Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow) Simeon, Sir Barrington
Dalrymple, Sir Charles Lawrence, Sir Jos. (Monmouth) Smith, Abel H.(Hertford, East)
Davenport, William Bromley Lawson, Jn. G. (Yorks., N. R.) Smith, H. C (North'mb Tyneside)
Denny, Colonel Lee, A. H. (Hants., Fareham) Spear, John Ward
Dickinson, Robert Edmond Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage Spencer, Sir E. (W. Bromwich)
Dickson, Charles Scott Leveson-Gower, Frederick N.S. Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Lancs.)
Digby, John K. D. Wingfield- Llewellyn, Evan Henry Stirling- Max well, Sir John M.
Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Long, Col. Chas. W. (Evesham)) Stock, James Henry
Doxford, Sir William Theodore Long, Rt. Hon. W. (Bristol, S.) Stroyan, John
Duke, Henry Edward Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft) Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley
Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin Lucas, Reginald J.(Portsmouth Talbot, Rt. Hn. J. G. (Oxf'd Univ.)
Dyke, Rt. Hn. Sir William Hart Lyttelton Rt. Hon. Alfred Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)
Faber, Edmund B. (Hants., W.) Macdona, John Gumming Thornton, Percy M.
Faber, George Denison (York) Maconochie, A. W. Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.
Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst M'Calnont, Colonel James Tuff, Charles
Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne M'Killop, James (Stirlingshire) Valentia, Viscount
FitzGerald, Sir Robert Penrose- Malcolm, Ian Vincent, Sir Edgar (Exeter)
Fitzroy, Hn. Edward Algernon Manners, Lord Cecil Walrond, Rt. Hn. Sir William H.
Flannery, Sir Fortescue Maxwell, W.J.H. (Dumfriessh.) Warde, Colonel C. E.
Flower, Sir Ernest Middlemore, Jn. Throgmorton Welby, Lt.-Col A.C.E.(Taunton)
Forster, Henry William Mitchell, Edw. (Fermanagh, N). Welby, Sir Chas. G. E. (Notts).
Fyler, John Arthur Montagu, G. (Huntingdon) Whiteley, H. (Ashton und. Lyne)
Galloway, William Johnson Moon, Edward Robert Pacy Whitmore, Charles Algernon
Gardner, Ernest Morrell, George Herbert Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Gibbs, Hon. A. G. H. Morrison, James Archibald Willox, Sir John Archibald
Godson, Sir Augustus Fredk. Morton, Arthur H. Aylmer Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E.R.
Core, Hn. S.F. Ormsby-(Linc) Mount, William Arthur Wilson, John (Glasgow)
Gorst, Rt. Hon. Sir John Eldon Mowbray, Sir Robert Gray C. Wilson-Todd, Sir WH.(Yorks.)
Goulding, Edward Alfred Murray, Rt. Hon. A. G. (Bute) Wodehouse, Rt. Hn. E.R.(Bath)
Graham, Henry Robert Murray, Charles J. (Coventry) Wolff, Gustav, Wilhelm
Greene, Sir E.W.(B'ry S. Edm'nds) Murray, Col. Wyndham (Bath) Wortley, Rt. Hn. C. B. Stuart-
Greene, W. Raymond-(Cambs.) Newdegate, Francis A. N. Wylie, Alexander
Grenfell, William Henry Nicholson, William Graham Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Greville, Hon. Ronald O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Hall, Edward Marshall Pease, Herbt. Pike (Darlington) TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood
Hamilton, Marq of(L'nd'nderry) Peel, Hn. Wm. Robert Wellesley
Hare, Thomas Leigh Pemberton, John S. G. and Mr. Ailwyn Fellowes.
Harris, F. Leverton (Tynem'th) Percy, Earl

Original Question again proposed.

MR. BROADHURST (Leicester)

said he thought it would be unfortunate if this Vote went by default and therefore he moved to reduce it by £100. So far as he could understand these Estimates, this expedition to Somaliland was to cost this year £1,500,000. He wanted to know whether the Secretary for War could inform the Committee what the approximate total cost of this war had been up to the present time, and whether the right hon. Gentleman could offer any guarantee as to the probable length of this war? The whole thing had been a disastrous undertaking to this country. It had been conducted with great loss of life, and no one had been able to understand what the real object of the war was, or whether it would end even if we succeeded in capturing the so-called "Mad Mullah." He did not know whether the Government continued to call that gentleman the "Mad Mullah," but there seemed to be considerable method in his madness. It appeared to him that the War Office regarded this war as a permanent institution; but he hoped the Committee would have some assurance that it would not be continued, and that something would be done to bring it to an end. Would the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of War tell the House of Commons what the Government were going to do with the "Mad Mullah" when they had captured him I What he understood was that this gentleman was a patriot in his own country; that he believed in the Imperialism in his own part of the world; that he objected to invasion and interference by foreigners; and that he did not want immigrants whom he disliked to come into his land by force. Therefore he was called the "Mad Mullah!" In these times of extravagant expenditure, when the resources of the country were being severely taxed, and when the financial outlook was causing great anxiety to thoughtful people, he hoped the Secretary for War would be able to tell the Committee something of interest in regard to this question. He wanted to know, first, the amount which this war had cost up to the present time; second, whether the right hon. Gentleman could make any reasonable estimate—he did not mean a War Office estimate but a real genuine estimate—of how long this war was to be continued; and third, what return this country was to get for this enormous outlay in that wild part of the world.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Item, Vote 1, Sub-head BB (Pay, &c, of the Somaliland Expeditionary Force), be reduced by £100."—(Mr. Broadhurst.)


said that it was not a new circumstance in our history that we should have to make such expeditions as this in Somaliland. The Mullah might be a patriot as the hon. Gentleman had said, for all he knew, but this patriot had, on three occasions, raided British territory and put to death those who were under our protection. We were just as much bound, when an armed invader entered the lands of those we had undertaken to protect, to send an expedition against that invader as if his raid had been made upon those under the direct rule of the Crown. This, or any Government, was compelled to drive the invader from the territory of the protectorate, although he might come back. The Government believed that there was now a more favourable chance than ever before of putting an end to these raids and getting rid of the Mullah. The operations up to the present time had cost £3,300,000, and the present Vote would carry them on to the end of the financial year. What would take place after that he could not say. Undoubtedly this was a most critical period, because the grass would be beginning to grow a little later, and the circumstances which controlled the operations of the enemy would cease to control him. He thought that they might feel sanguine that the efforts which were being made by our troops would be crowned with a measure of success. The only question now was whether hon. Gentlemen desired that the Government should bring those operations to a close before they had made certain that the tribes for whose protection the Government was responsible, would be no longer liable to such incursions.


said that there had been recently rather disquieting news from Somaliland with reference to the retirement of General Egerton. He hoped that the Committee would have an assurance from the Secretary of State that the campaign would be brought to a close, and that it would not be like the Dutch campaign in Sumatra, which had been going on for thirty years. He should like an assurance as to what the proposals for the future were. If the present operations were not successful, were they to be continued indefinitely at enormous expenditure? Last year they were told that no further operations would be undertaken; but as soon as the House rose a fresh expedition was started. He did not express any opinion as to whether that expedition should have been undertaken or not, but there were two points which were very unwisely carried out. In the first place there was a large importation of Indian camels into Somaliland which were not suited by the climate and which died like flies. Secondly native levies under British officers were employed after a considerable sum had been spent on their training, but the moment the first shot was fired they all bolted leaving the officers in a position of great danger. He wished to know whether that practice would be stopped, and also whether the House would be consulted before any larger operations were undertaken.


said the Secretary of State seemed surprised at the Committee being taken aback by this Supplementary Estimate. But surely it was not surprising, considering the original Estimate was only £250,000, and that the Supplementary Estimate now asked for amounted to £1,600,000. The Secretary of State said that when British territory was invaded it was the duty of this country to drive out the enemy. As a general principle they all agreed to that; but he wished to ask whether the Secretary of State thought that the Government or the House of Commons would have undertaken to drive out the Mullah if they had known it would lead to such enormous expenditure and such great loss of life. That was a question which met with the high-faluting of the Secretary of State. Now that they were in it they would have to go through with it. The original criticism on the expedition, that it was like looking for a needle in a bundle of hay, had unfortunately been justified. The Mullah had only to retreat and it was most unlikely that he would be brought to book. The only satisfaction which the Secretary of State was likely to get was that the war would be like the Dutch war in Sumatra which had been in progress for fifty years. This was one of the cases in which the cost had not been counted before the expedition was entered upon, and it was clear that there was a great deal of miscalculation and muddle in connection with it.

* SIR CHARLES DILKE (Gloucestershire, Forest of Dean)

said that the Secretary of State had put altogether too high the doctrine of British territory in a matter of this kind. Immediately before the war began this was an India Office occupation on the coast in order to promote trade with Aden. Then the India Office handed it over to the Foreign Office, who in turn handed it over to the War Office to carry on the war. The Secretary of State spoke as if the country was a portion of British territory as is India. Nothing of the kind. We had never been in the country. There were no magistrates no residents, and no British officials in it. It was a desert country where we had never been. At present there were no frontiers, but ultimately no doubt they would be drawn, and possibly the territory the Committee was now discussing would be handed over to someone else as a vast neighbouring territory of the same kind had been handed by us to Abyssinia. To speak of such a territory which they had merely taken by colouring it red on the map, as British territory in the sense in which the United Kingdom or India was British territory was simply misleading the House of Commons. The moral of the whole thing was that the House should be a little more careful than they had been in former times, in the matter of pegging out claims.


said he had not put the question as one of territory at all. It was a question of treaty obligations. It was perfectly open to the House on a proper occasion to discuss whether the Government ought to have entered into those treaties or not, but, having entered into them for the protection of life and property for our own purposes, he held, although the opinion might be regarded as heretical by hon. Gentlemen opposite, that they were bound to give effect to them. The hon. Member for Poplar asked whether the Government would have entered on this expedition had they known what would happen. If a war for the protection of life and property was justifiable, the question of cost ought not to decide whether it should be undertaken or not. If it were right to go to war to protect those to whose protection this country was pledged, then the question of money did not in his opinion enter primarily into account.


I ought to remind the Committee that the policy of entering upon this expedition is not open to discussion now. The future policy and the conduct of the operations are quite open to criticism.


said he was very much struck by the answer; which the Secretary of State gave to the Question which had been asked him as to how long he expected the war would last. The right hon. Gentlemen said he could not say, and justified his answer by reference to the length of the South African campaign. The Irish Members had every reason to protest against the Vote, and he was sorry that the right hon. Gentleman who moved the reduction did not move the omission of the total amount. There was no necessity for this campaign, and there was no question of defending British territory. Up to the present this campaign had cost £1,800,000, and the right hon. Gentleman had had to admit that no satisfactory result had been achieved. The "Mad Mullah" was said to have been turned out of the territory. If that was so, why did they not keep him where they had him? He strongly protested against the expenditure, because Ireland was already heavily taxed for wars in which she had absolutely no interest and with which she had no sympathy. Last night when a reasonable request was made for money for Ireland, the reply of the Treasury was that they had no money, and yet these large sums could be provided without the slightest prospect of any benefit accruing. Of all the expeditions ever undertaken by Great Britain this was one of the most shocking. He hoped the Amendment would be pressed to as division in order that an opportunity might be given of protesting against an expedition which was unnecessary and a Vote which could not be explained.


said he could not vote for the Amendment as this was a matter which must be left to the responsibility of Ministers, and if the House of Commons was so advised as to keep in power Ministers who undertook expeditions which ought not to be undertaken, they should be prepared to vote the necessary Estimates. He desired to press on the Committee, however, that this was one of a series of small wars, which, in his opinion, ought to and could have been avoided. It was this kind of subsidiary expenditure which went largely to swell the enormous Estimates with which the House had to deal. The case for the Somaliland War—it had ceased to be an expedition—was a very bad one. He had never been able to comprehend the object for which it was being waged. Our original strip of territory was quite enough for us in that wretched locality, and for some years it was administered with considerable success. The Somalis were an easily governed people. Sufficient reason had not been shown for carrying fire and sword amongst them. All sorts of assurances of an encouraging character had been given with regard to the war, but they had all been falsified. He attributed the outbreak to the much too great independence allowed, especially to military gentlemen, in the districts concerned. These gentlemen, being anxious for distinction and promotion, were much too apt to engage this country in matters which led to these costly wars. What was to be done with the Mullah if he were caught? It would have been much better to have allowed him to run loose in his own part of the country. He earnestly hoped that some assurance would be given that this was the last sum the Committee would be ask to vote in the matter. If, however, as he understood, this was merely to carry matters on until 31st March, and that another £1,000,000 or £2,000,000 would be asked for next year, it opened up a most distressing vista. He warned the Government against the beginning of strife in respect of these wars, which started in a small way, but ended by costing millions of money and thousands of lives, and led to no adequate results.

MR. LABOUCHERE (Northampton)

said the hon. Member for King's Lynn, who had asked for an assurance that no more money would be asked for, could not have been in the House when the Secretary of State declared that the war must be carried through no matter how much it cost. In these circumstances the Committee ought to have a clear understanding as to what they were fighting for. If there was a possibility of spending £100,000,000 he wanted to know under what conditions they were going to make peace. Were they to go on pursuing the Mullah until they caught him? Whenever we quarrelled with any of these tribes, we, in order to bring to them the blessings of Christianity, sent out an expedition to burn down their houses, and to destroy all we possibly could; and then, having mowed down the natives with our machine guns, we thanked God we were superior to them. There was no use in continuing these operations. If the Mullah was really caught another would arise. Nobody could show the slightest possibility of any benefit accruing from this expenditure of this money, and therefore he should gladly vote for the Amendment.

MR. JOSEPH DEVLIN (Kilkenny, N.)

said if the Government embarked upon an expedition of this kind this country ought to pay for it, and he did not see why Ireland should be called upon to contribute any share for this expedition to Somaliland. Last night a claim was made for £3,000 for technical education in Ireland, and it was treated in the spirit in which the Treasury always treated claims of a practical character from Ireland. Now £1,800,000 was to be expended upon hunting the Mad Mullah of whose future peregrinations they had no assurance. The hon. Member for King's Lynn had asked what was to be done with the Mullah when he was caught. Might he suggest that he should be made President of the Tariff Commission or found a seat upon the Treasury Bench. This was a useless expenditure because the Mad Mullah was simply a religious enthusiast and that was no reason why he should be pursued at a cost to the taxpayers of £1,800,000. There were religious zealots in this House but they did not spend any money in pursuing them. It was scandalous that such a sum of money should be taken from the British Treasury when there was so much need for social reform and for more generous treatment towards Ireland in matters like technical education. He entirely associated himself with the hon. Member for Galway, in protesting against this outrageous expenditure and against the refusal of the Government to grant the small demand of Ireland in regard to technical education.

* MR. AINSWORTH (Argyllshire)

said it was desirable that some responsible member of the Government should tell the House what was their policy in Somaliland. The South African War and its results proved that without a definite policy confusion and loss were certain to follow. It was impossible to see the end of this expedition. What was it intended for? This Vote was no criterion as to the further amounts the House would be asked for, and he sincerely hoped that before the House voted on the matter some undertaking would be given as to what the Government had in view.

MR. JOHN BURNS (Battersea)

said he shared the distinction of opposing the Somaliland expedition for the last five or six years both by speech and vote. In the early days of this expedition he remembered both the hon. Member for Northampton and himself being gibed and jeered at by hon. Members opposite. It was suggested that they were unpatriotic and not touched with the new Imperialism, and it was said that they were not alive to the true interests of the British Empire. He claimed that they had been more prescient than those who jeered at them, and to-night he was using the same arguments against this expedition as he had urged before. He contended that the Mullah had the right, as a religious zealot and a tribal chief, to exercise what rights he thought he had and to contend for them with other men of similar ambitions and views. It was not our business to go to the four corners of the earth adjusting religious differences between Buddhist passive re-sisters and high Churchmen there. The Mullah was a sort of fiscal reformer on the ramp whose authority was disputed, but the fact that he held those views was no reason why this country should do what had been done in Somaliland. See how appetite grows on what it feeds upon. The sum of £80,000 was the amount of the original Estimate for this expedition, and it grew from that to £250,000. Now they found that it had become £1,800,000, and if they continued Mullah hunting he believed the total would be nearer £5,000,000. He wished to take time by the forelock, and he protested against a continuation of this expenditure. There was an impression that these expeditions benefited trade, but there was not a greater illusion. The idea that they could extend trade in this way was a ridiculous one. The man who had done most to kill British trade in Africa was Mr. H. M. Stanley, whom the Government had imitated. They ought to do all they could to develop trade routes, but they should not interefere with tribal customs. They ought to let those tribes have their rows on religious matters just as they did in Belfast and other parts of the British Empire. If they broke each others heads it was only only a way they had got, but if they thought they were going to benefit trade by pursuing the Mullah all over the place they were very much mistaken. Ireland had just asked for £3,000 as a grant towards technical education. Not long ago men were running up and down the country telling us that the time for economy had arrived, that we were a dying race with languishing industries and disappearing trade, and we were told that we must go into competition with the world with new commercial ideas. The policy of the Government was like the policy initiated by Solomon 4,000 years ago, and was correctly described in the words "The eyes of a fool are in the ends of the earth." He did not object to hon. Members paying for their foreign policy out of their own purses, but he did object to the East Coast of Africa being made a sort of enlarged Salisbury Plain, about 1,000 miles long and 70 miles broad, on which our men were sent in a hopeless quest after a religious will-o'-the-wisp who was continually dragging them into difficulties, dangers misery, and suffering, with an objective which did not warrant or justify the policy of the Government in any sense whatever. When they heard so much cheap sympathy expressed for the unemployed he contended that this £2,000,000 would have been better spent on harbours of refuge around the Irish or Scotch Coast or in establishing Charlottenburg schools in different parts of this country. If this Government remained in office they would be told the same thing next year. and the answer would be, "This man must be suppressed." There was no particular evidence that the Mullah had done any great harm; it might be said that he made people slaves, but it did not lie in the mouth of this Government to accuse a wild native religious zealot of treating people badly or of making other people slaves, because the Government had done it themselves and were continuing to do it. Those tribal wars and military expeditions conducted and started mainly when the House of Commons was not in session were not only a scandal to their name but they broke the tradition they professed of treating inferior races kindly, and they involved this country in tremendous expense and a great waste of money. He appealed to the Secretary of State for War to withdraw the troops from this expedition in which there was no honour, glory, or credit. When the right hon. Gentleman was reorganising the Army he might with the money which was being thrown away on this expedition be able to do something better for Tommy Atkins. He protested against the wicked expenditure of money on wanton expeditions.

MR. RITCHIE (Croydon)

thought it was a great pity that language of exaggeration was used in regard to this matter. He was sure that a plain statement of the facts of the case would be sufficient to show how serious was the position we were in in Somaliland, and he was satisfied nobody in that House regretted more than His Majesty's Ministers the size which this expedition had now unfortunately assumed. Notwithstanding what the Secretary for War had said in regard to our responsibilities, he did not believe that His Majesty's Ministers would have entered upon an expedition of this kind if they had dreamt for a moment that it was going to reach its present size. He did not quite agree with his right hon. friend the Secretary for War when he assumed that it was the duty of the Government to enter upon such expeditions as this over such a vast expanse of territory, involving such an enormous outlay of money and loss of life, with regard to every portion of territory which was assumed to be more or less under our protectorate. He thought that was putting it much to high. It was a great pity, he thought, that we should enter as freely as we did on obligations of that kind. He was satisfied that it was very largely true that we ought, as far as possible, to confine our responsibilities to the sea-coast, and not endeavour to undertake obligations in the trackless desert as in this case. The position was not really quite as his right hon. friend suggested, that there was a large number of people under our protection who had been raided and massacred. His recollection was that a large portion of the inhabitants of this territory were rather in sympathy with the Mullah than with us. It was understood when this expedition was entered upon, that we were to drive the Mullah from certain territory which was of service to his cattle and followers, and that having done that we should consider our responsibilities at an end, retire then to our own territory, and endeavour subsequently, by the extension of trade routes, and perhaps of railways, to extend our peaceful influence and so counteract the effect of the Mullah's movements. But he quite saw the original intention, against the will of the Government, had had to be abandoned, and they had had to go further and further in this matter, much beyond what they at one time anticipated. That was the danger of these expeditions, we never could tell when we entered on a small expedition how far we should be drawn on. He quite acknowledged that we could not leave this territory now without inflicting considerable damage on the Mullah. We had inflicted considerable damage already, he understood; and he thought they ought to ask the Government to define to the House what was to be the limit of the expedition to which we were committed. He was rather alarmed at some expressions which fell from his right hon. friend, who seemed to assume that this expedition might possibly go on indefinitely. He did not think that would be satisfactory to the House or the country; and they ought to hear from the Government whether, after having inflicted considerable injury on the Mullah, as we had done, and shown that we were not disposed to accept the situation which was created, a period would be put to this expedition. It would be satisfactory to know that at some not remote period they might look forward to the termination of this very great expense.


said he was rather astonished at the speech of his right hon. friend. There had been two definite appeals to the Government from the people under our protection. His right hon. friend agreed to the sending of the first expedition, which was successful in driving the Mullah out of our protectorate. The blow, however, was not a severe one, and the Mullah commenced to raid again. His right hon. friend approved of the second expedition, and that expedition suffered very serious defeat. Was that the time when we ought to have retired?


Certainly not.


said they then undertook a third expedition, which was now, he hoped, in process of coming to a fortunate conclusion. [AN HON. MEMBER: What is it going to do?] His right hon. friend suggested that they ought to have brought the expedition to an end at some other period——


said the right hon. Gentleman must really not misinterpret him. He had never disputed the fact that he, along with his colleagues, was responsible for entering upon this expedition; he never disputed the fact that the Government had been driven, necessarily, and very much against their will, far beyond what they originally intended, and that they had no option but to go on. The question he had asked was what was the limit to the expedition which the Government anticipated; because his right hon. friend, in some of his remarks, had seemed to assume that it might go on indefinitely. He had never denied his responsibility, or the duty of the Government to go on with it, although he deplored it, as he, believed the Government did.


said he was very glad then to find that they were entirely in agreement. He certainly understood the right hon. Gentleman to have suggested that they ought to have stopped the operations.




said they were agreed that the Government had been justified in carrying out the expeditions. He supposed there was no section in that House to whom the necessity of continuing this campaign was more unpalatable than to the Government. It was obvious to everybody concerned, as the right hon. Gentleman had said, that there was no glory or profit in the campaign. As to what was the policy of the Government with regard to Somaliland, he thought it was a matter of plain common sense. The policy of the Government was, and must be, that of anybody else in their position; they were now carrying on this campaign with some anticipation of a favourable result; they hoped to produce such an impression by the disorganisation of the forces of the Mullah as to make it sure that we should not be exposed a fourth time to a recurrence of these attacks. He could not for the life of him understand what was the other point in the operations at which hon. Members recommended they should stop. His right hon. friend did not suggest that they should have stopped when we were defeated; he did not suggest that they should stop now when we had a chance of success. The point, of course, at which they should stop would be when we had achieved success, and secured the safety of those for whom we were responsible. [Cries of "Who are they?"] They were practically the whole of the coast tribes along the northern edge of Somaliland. It would be futile on his part to state an exact time when the operations ought to stop, or when they hoped to achieve success. He did not agree with the hon. Member for Battersea that his reference to Holy Writ was at all relevant in this matter. He thought it would be a bad day for the British Empire when one took the hon. Member's advice.

MR. BRYCE (Aberdeen, S.)

said he did not think the Government could be surprised at this debate. This war had been going on for more than two years. The original Estimate was £250,000, and a great deal of money had been spent since. Now they were presented with a bill for £1,600,000, and according to the Secretary of State for War there was "some anticipation of a favourable result." Did anybody in this House suppose that if the Government had had any idea what the course of the war was going to be they would have entered upon it? And, indeed, there need never have been any war at all but for the mismanagement of the people on the spot. What made the present case so inexcusable was that we had had so many examples in the past of similar wars. We had had protectorate wars on the north-west frontier of India. Wars like the present one had occurred over and over again, in which enormous sums of money had been spent. How long was this war to go on? Would Estimate after Estimate be presented to the House as long as the Mullah was able to keep the field and threaten fresh raids? It must come to an end; and was it not the part of good sense to endeavour to bring it to an end as soon as they possibly could? Was it not a reasonable policy for the Government to make up their mind and let their officials and their generals know that they would not continue this wild chase of the Mullah from oasis to oasis, and that if they did not succeed in catching him in the present trap, these costly expeditions would be abandoned and subsidiary methods, which have been found so useful on the north-west frontier of India, would be adopted to repel the raids of this nimble and active enemy? He believed that the debate would not be futile if it could make the Government realise that these expeditions were useless. It was not from any Party spirit that they desired the Government to change their policy, and put an end once for all to these sources of expenditure.

MR. BAYLEY (Derbyshire, Chesterfield)

said he wished to ask whether the Mullah or his friends had made any suggestion, direct or indirect, to our officers in the field of negotiating in any way to bring this war to an end. Was there any chance of our securing the services of any man out in Somaliland who had influence with the Mullah to induce him to come to reasonable terms of peace?


said that on previous occasions he had entered his protest against the whole of the expenditure entailed by this expedition. At the outset he desired to say that when they were dealing with a matter of this kind, which involved the expenditure of millions of the taxpayers' money, they ought not to be treated to any exhibition either of heat or temper from the new Secretary for War. The Irish Members were accustomed to have their protests derided and their actions misrepresented; but he thought it was a new departure for the Secretary of War to rise and with some passion to find fault, not with an Irish Member at all, but with the ex-Chancellor of the Exchequer because he ventured to express views not on all-fours with those he entertained. They were at least entitled to have courtesy and not temper displayed in discussions of this kind; and he warned the Minister for War that they were only at the commencement of the session, that the right hon. Gentleman had a great deal of work to get through in connection with his Army Estimates, and that, if they were to have displays of temper, he promised the right hon. Gentleman most faithfully that the discussions of Army affairs would be protracted. He was himself naturally by temperament most peaceably disposed, and it was not very easy to irritate him; but one of the things which did irritate him was, when discussing a question like this, if they were not treated with that calmness of demeanour which certainly ought to characterise a highly placed and not badly paid official. He complained that there seemed to be no settled plan of campaign in reference to this expedition; and he emphasised the fact that whereas when the House was asked in 1901 for a Vote of £200,000, and it was said that that amount might possibly be the last demanded, now they made a demand which ran into millions, and were apparently just as far off seeing the end of this expedition as ever. From the Irish point of view expenditure of this kind was simply and absolutely intolerable. He defied any member of the Government to say how, in any way, England could possibly gain either in prestige, commerce, or reputation, from an expedition of this kind; but, whatever England had to gain, they knew perfectly well that, as far as Ireland was concerned, they had absolutely nothing to gain, though he supposed they would have to pay, in the usual course, their share of the expenditure. England might have a vendetta against the Mullah and might have made up its mind, for the welfare and stability of the Empire, that he should be hunted down; but Ireland had no quarrel of the kind or any serious interest in the matter; and he put it, as man to man, if he were not justified, representing thousands of farmers and poor agricultural labourers in Ireland, in protesting in their names against the expenditure of millions of money in a wild-goose chase in Africa which could bring no credit or honour to England and certainly no good to Ireland. Sometimes the Irish Members were derided because they were not more content and more temperate in their language and more patient. But he was surprised that, in face of the provocation they received in matters of this kind, they maintained the patience they had exhibited from time to time. It was an unfair, an unjust, and a monstrous thing that Ireland should be directly or indirectly charged a single shilling for this expedition. He freely admitted that, as far as he knew the merits of the quarrel, his sympathies were with this unfortunate African native who was being hunted down; but if the Government would undertake that a reduction should be made in respect of Ireland and that it should not be called upon to bear any part of the cost of this war, he would, in spite of his sympathies, let them have the Vote of money without protest. So long, however, as Ireland was charged with any proportion of the cost, they were entitled to make their protest.

Almost nightly since the session began they had had proof upon proof piled up of the unfair way Ireland was financially treated. They asked for money for educational purposes to improve the industrial life of the country; they had asked—he had done so over and over again, almost humiliating himself—for money in order to improve their coast line and especially their miserable harbours; but they found it almost impossible to get any literal response to their demands, and yet they were asked to come down without demur and vote hundreds of thousands of pounds for the purpose of hunting the Mullah in Somaliland. All he could say was that he would give himself the consolation—a poor one though it was—of protesting as strongly as he could; and the Government certainly should not get the Vote until he told them all he thought about it. They wondered often why the Irish people were not as loyal as other peoples in the Empire to the English connection, and why the Army and Navy were not popular in Ireland. The reason would be found in Votes such as that they were now considering. How could they expect people who did not get the use of a gunboat to protect their fisheries, to exhibit enthusiasm for an expedition such as this. The expedition was making England the laughing-stock of the world. If they wanted to break the power of the Mullah permanently and effectively why did not the Government make their arrangements accordingly? Why did they continue to dribble out small bodies of troops which were cut to pieces by the overwhelming numbers arrayed against them? It was one of the most disgraceful, most lamentable, and most discreditable chapters in the recent history of this country, that brave soldiers and devoted men should be sent on expeditions for which they were not in the slightest degree equipped. Quite recently a number of gallant officers were simply overwhelmed by superior numbers, and their lives were sacrificed to the blundering and bungling of the War Office. That was not the way to conduct an expedition of this kind. If the Government made up their minds to crush the Mullah they should have come to Parliament and said, "This is going to be an expenditure of millions of money it will take a considerable time, we will have to send a large force; will you allow us to do it." Instead of doing that the Government were simply trifling with the question, and when a disaster occurred they simply said they had not calculated the strength of the Mullah and they wanted a little more money and a few more men. Then another disaster occurred, and more men and money were asked for. But even now the Government were unable to say whether there was any prospect of an end being put to those operations. That was not the proper way to conduct such a business. The Government should in the first instance have issued a Blue-book setting forth all the circumstances and stating what they intended to do, and they could then have asked Parliament to sanction the expedition. Instead of that the expedition was entered upon without hon. Members being given an opportunity to vote Aye or No. All they were asked to do was, when blundering and incapacity was shown and when there was disaster and loss of life, to vote millions of money.

At the beginning of the campaign the then Secretary of State for War said that the Mullah was mad, and that he would be very soon overcome and made to realise the enormity of his offence in endeavouring to defend his own country. Then followed news of about six or seven British officers being slaughtered, and then it was discovered that the Mullah was not quite so mad as had been imagined, and more money was asked for. Now the Committee was asked to believe that this war had been entered on in order to keep faith with certain tribes. Was there ever a more monstrous proposition than that British and Irish taxpayers should be asked to spend millions of money in order that war might be waged against a native chief who had incurred the enmity of other native chiefs. He was rather amused when he heard the Secretary of State say that after all there was some slight prospect of those operations being successful. That was not a very sanguine view nor one which would encourage the House of Commons to sanction the continuance of this expedition. He supposed that the right hon. Gentlemen based his assumption on the statement he made that the Mullah had become somewhat depressed. He himself did not know whether the Mullah was depressed or not at the present time; neither did he care; but if it was possible for the Mullah to know that the right hon. Gentleman was in charge of the military arrangements of this country, so far from depressing him the knowledge would encourage him, because the general consensus of opinion was that bad as the late Secretary of State had been, the present Gentleman from Belfast was in all probability a great deal worse. The first thing necessary for the country, if it wished to be successful in military expeditions, was to put its military affairs into the hands of competent and able men who knew their business, men who would be able to give an adequate statement to the House, and men who, above all, would be able to keep their tempers. He protested, as a private Member, against the exhibition of temper on the part of the Secretary of State when the ex-Chancellor of the Exchequer had the audacity not to agree with him. They were coming to a pretty pass when it was not sufficient that a prominent member of the Government should leave the

Treasury Bench and sit below the Gangway, but that he should be expected never to say a word in opposition to the darlings of the gods, who were now on the Treasury Bench. As far as he was concerned he was in this enviable position, that he had never been in a Cabinet.


rose in his place, and claimed to move, That the Question be now put.


I beg to give notice that I will make the Government pay for this over and over again.

Question put, "That the Question be now put."

The Committee divided:—Ayes, 204; Noes, 137. (Division List No. 20.)

Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Cripps, Charles Alfred Hatch, Ernest Frederick Geo.
Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel Crossley, Rt. Hon. Sir Savile Hay, Hon. Claude George
Allhusen, Augustus Hen. Eden Cubitt, Hon. Henry Heath, A. Howard (Hanley)
Anson, Sir William Reynell Dalkeith, Earl of Heath, James (Staffords., N.W.)
Arnold-Forster. Rt. Hn. Hugh O. Dalrymple, Sir Charles Heaton, John Henniker
Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John Davenport, William Bromley Henderson, Sir A. (Stafford, W.
Bagot, Capt. Josceline FitzRoy Denny, Colonel Hickman, Sir Alfred
Bailey, James (Walworth) Dewar, Sir T. R(Tower Hamlets) Hoare, Sir Samuel
Bain, Colonel James Robert Dickinson, Robert Edmond Hobhouse, Rt Hn H (Somers't, E
Baird, John George Alexander Dickson, Charles Scott Hogg, Lindsay
Balcarres, Lord Digby, John K. D. Wingfield- Horner, Frederick William
Balfour, Rt. Hon. G. W. (Leeds) Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Hoult, Joseph
Balfour, Kenneth R. (Christen.) Doxford, Sir William Theodore Houston, Robert Paterson
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin Howard, J. (Kent, Faversham)
Bartley, Sir George C. T. Dyke, Rt. Hn. Sir William Hart Howard, J. (Midd., Tottenham)
Beach, Rt. Hn. Sir Mich. Hicks Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas Hozier, Hn. James Henry Cecil
Bignold, Arthur Faber, Edmund B. (Hants., W.) Hunt, Rowland
Bigwood, James Faber, George Denison (York) Johnstone, Heywood (Sussex)
Blundell. Colonel Henry Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop)
Bond, Edward Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Kerr, John
Boulnois, Edmund Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne Knowles, Sir Lees
Bousfield, William Robert Fitzroy, Hn. Edward Algernon Laurie, Lieut.-General
Brodrick, Rt. Hon. St. John Flannery, Sir Fortescue Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow)
Bull, William James Forster, Henry William Lawson, Jn. G. (Yorks., N. R.)
Burdett-Coutts, W. Galloway, William Johnson Lee, A. H. (Hants., Fareham)
Butcher. John George Gardner, Ernest Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage
Campbell, Rt. Hn. J.A.(Glasgow) Gibbs, Hon. A. G. H. Leveson-Gower, Frederick N.S.
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Gore, Hn. S.F. Ormsby-(Linc) Llewellyn, Evan Henry
Cautley, Henry Strother Goschen, Hn. George Joachim Long, Col. Chas. W. (Evesham)
Cavendish. R. F. (N. Lancs.) Goulding, Edward Alfred Long, Rt. Hon. W. (Bristol, S.)
Cavendish, V.C.W.(Derbyshire) Graham, Henry Robert Lonsdale, John Brownlee
Cayzer, Sir Charles William Greene, Sir E. W (B'ry S Edm'nds) Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft)
Cecil, Lord Hugh (Greenwich) Greene, W. Raymond-(Cambs.) Lucas, Reginald J.(Portsmouth
Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. A. (Worc) Greville, Hon. Ronald Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred
Clive, Captain Percy A. Hall, Edward Marshall Macdona, John Gumming
Coates, Edward Feetham Hambro, Charles Eric Maconothie, A. W.
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Hamilton, Marq of (L'nd'nderry) M'Arthur, Charles (Liverpool)
Coghill, Douglas Harry Hare, Thomas Leigh M'Calmont, Colonel James
Cohen, Benjamin Louis Harris, F. Leverton (Tynem'th) M'Killop, James (Stirlingshire)
Colston, Chas. Edw. H. Athole Harris, Dr. Fredk. R.(Dulwich) Malcolm, Ian
Cook, Sir Frederick Lucas Haslam, Sir Alfred S. Manners, Lord Cecil
Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge Haslett, Sir James Horner Maxwell, W. J. H. (Dumfriessh.)
Milner, Rt. Hn. Sir Frederick G. Remnant, James Farquharson Talbot, Rt. Hn. J.G (Oxf'd Univ.)
Milvain, Thomas Richards, Henry Charles Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)
Montagu, G. (Huntingdon) Ridley, S. Forde (Bethnal Green) Thornton, Percy M.
Moon, Edward Robert Pacy Ritchie, Rt. Hn. Chas. Thomson Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.
Morgan, D. J. (Walthamstow) Robertson. Herbert (Hackney) Tuff, Charles
Morrell, George Herbert Rolleston, Sir John F. L. Valentia, Viscount
Morrison, James Archibald Rollit, Sir Albert Kaye Vincent, Sir Edgar (Exeter)
Morton, Arthur H. Aylmer Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert Walrond, Rt. Wn. Sir William H.
Mount, William Arthur Round, Rt. Hon. James Warde, Colonel C. E.
Mowbray, Sir Robert Gray C. Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool) Welby, Lt.-Col. A.C.E(Taunton)
Murray, Rt. Hon. A. G. (Bute) Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford- Welby, Sir Chas. G. E. (Notts.)
Murray, Charles J. (Coventry) Sadler, Col. Samuel Alexander Whiteley, H.(Ashton und. Lyne)
Murray, Col. Wyndham (Bath) Sandys, Lt.-Col. Thos. Myles Whitmore, Charles Algernon
Newdegate, Francis A. N. Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.) Willox, Sir John Archibald
Nicholson, William Graham Sharpe, William Edward T. Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E.R.
O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens Sinclair, Louis (Romford) Wilson-Todd, Sir W.H.(Yorks.)
Pease, Hebt. Pike (Darlington) Sloan, Thomas Henry Wodehouse, Rt. Hn. E.R,(Bath)
Peel, Hn. Wm. Robert Wellesley Smith, Abel H.(Hertford, East) Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm
Percy, Earl Smith, HC(North'mb Tyneside Wortley, Rt. Hn. C. B. Stuart-
Platt-Higgins, Frederick Smith, James Parker (Lanarks.) Wylie, Alexander
Plummer, Walter R. Spear, John Ward Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Powell, Sir Francis Sharp Spencer, Sir E. (W. Bromwich) Wyndham-Quin, Major W. H.
Pretyman, Ernest George Stanley, Hn. Arthur (Ormskirk)
Pryce-Jones, Lt.-Col. Edward Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Lancs.) TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood
Pym, C. Guy Stirling-Maxwell, Sir John M.
Rasch, Sir Frederic Carne Stock, James Henry and Mr. Ailwyn Fellowes.
Ratcliff, R. F. Stroyan, John
Reid, James (Greenock) Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley
Abraham, William (Cork, N.E.) Flynn, James Christopher Newnes, Sir George
Ainsworth, John Stirling Foster, Sir Walter (Derby Co.) Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)
Asquith, Rt. Hn. Herb. Henry Freeman-Thomas, Captain F. Norton, Capt. Cecil William
Austin, Sir John Fuller, J. M. F. O'Brien, James F. X. (Cork)
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Furness, Sir Christopher O'Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.)
Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire) Gilhooly James O'Donnell, John (Mayo, S.)
Beaumont, Wentworth C. B. Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herb. John O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)
Bell, Richard Goddard, Daniel Ford O'Dowd, John
Blake, Edward Griffith, Ellis J. O'Malley, William
Boland, John Harmsworth, R. Leicester O'Mara, James
Brigg, John Harwood, George O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Broadhurst, Henry Hayden, John Patrick Palmer, Sir Chas. M. (Durham)
Bryce, Rt. Hon. James Hayter, Rt. Hn. Sir A. D. Partington, Oswald
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Hemphill, Rt. Hon. Charles H. Perks, Robert William
Burke, E. Haviland- Hobhouse, C. E. H. (Bristol, E.) Pirie, Duncan Y.
Burns, John Hutton, Alfred E. (Morley) Power, Patrick Joseph
Buxton, Sydney Charles Johnson, John (Gateshead) Price, Robert John
Caldwell, James Jones, D. Brynmor (Swansea) Priestley, Arthur
Campbell, John (Armagh, S.) Jones, William (Carnarvonshire) Rea, Russell
Campbell(Bannerman, Sir H.) Joyce, Michael Reckitt Harold James
Carvill, Patrick Geo. Hamilton Kearley, Hudson E. Reddy, M.
Condon, Thomas Joseph Kilbride, Denis Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Crean, Eugene Labouchere, Henry Redmond, William (Clare)
Crombie, John William Layland-Barratt, Francis Rickett, J. Compton
Dalziel, James Henry Leese, Sir Jos. F. (Accrington) Roberts, John Bryn (Eifion)
Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen) Leng, Sir John Roche, John
Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan Lewis, John Herbert Rose, Charles Day
Delany, William Logan, John William Runciman, Walter
Devlin, Chas. Ramsay (Galway) Lundon, W. Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel)
Devlin, Joseph (Kilkenny, N.) Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Schwann, Charles E.
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles MacVeagh, Jeremiah Sheehy, David
Doogan, P. C. M'Arthur, William (Cornwall) Shipman, Dr. John G.
Douglas, Charles M. (Lanark) M'Hugh, Patrick A. Sinclair, John (Forfarshire)
Elibank, Master of M'Kean, John Slack, John Bamford
Ellis, John Edward (Notts.) Mansfield, Horace Rendall Smith, Samuel (Flint)
Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan) Mitchell, Edw. (Fermanagh, N.) Soares, Ernest J.
Fenwick, Charles Mooney, John J. Spencer, Rt. Hn. C. R (Northants)
Ferguson, R. C. Munro (Leith) Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen) Stevenson, Francis S.
Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmond Murphy, John Sullivan, Donal
Flavin, Michael Joseph Nannetti, Joseph P. Tennant, Harold John
Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.) Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan) Woodhouse, Sir J.T(Huddersf'd
Thomas, Sir A.(Glamorgan, E.) Wason, Jn. Cathcart (Orkney) Young, Samuel
Thomas, D. Alfred (Merthyr) White, Luke (York. E. R.) Voxall, James Henry
Tomkinson, James Whiteley, George (York, W.R.)
Toulmin George Whitley, J. H. (Halifax) TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Captain Donelan and Mr. Patrick O'Brien.
Trevelyan, Charles Philips Wilson, Fred. W. (Norfolk, Mid.)
Wallace, Robert Wilson, John (Durham, Mid.)

Question put accordingly.

The Committee divided:—Ayes, 138; Noes, 203. (Division List No. 21.)

Abraham, William (Cork, N.E.) Griffith, Ellis J. Pirie, Duncan V.
Ainsworth, John Stirling Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B. Power, Patrick Joseph
Asquith, Rt. Hn. Herbt. Henry Harmsworth, R. Leicester Price, Robert John
Austin, Sir John Harwood, George Priestley, Arthur
Barry, E. (Cork. S.) Hayden, John Patrick Rea, Russell
Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire) Hayter, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur D. Reckitt, Harold James
Beaumont, Wentworth C. B. Hemphill, Rt. Hon. Charles H. Reddy, M.
Bell, Richard Hobhouse, C. E. H. (Bristol, E.) Redmond, John E. (Waterfowl)
Blake, Edward Hutton, Alfred E. (Morley) Redmond, William (Clare)
Boland, John Johnson, John (Gateshead) Rickett, J. Compton
Brigg, John Jones, D. Brynmor (Swansea) Roberts. John Bryn (Eifion)
Bryce, Rt. Hon. James Jones, William (Carnarvonshire) Roche, John
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Joyce, Michael Rose, Charles Day
Burke, E. Haviland- Kearley, Hudson E. Runciman, Walter
Buxton, Sydney Charles Kilbride, Denis Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel)
Caldwell, James Labouchere, Henry Schwann, Charles E.
Campbell, John (Armagh, S.) Layland-Barratt, Francis Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Leese, Sir Jos. F. (Accrington) Shipman, Dr. John G.
Carvill, Patrick Geo. Hamilton Leng, Sir John Sinclair. John (Forfarshire)
Condon, Thomas Joseph Lewis, John Herbert Slack, John Bamford
Crean, Eugene Logan, John William Smith, Samuel (Flint)
Crombie, John William Lundon, W. Soares, Ernest J.
Dalziel, James Henry Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Spencer, Rt. Hn. C. R. (Northants)
Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen) MacVeagh, Jeremiah Stevenson, Francis S.
Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan) McArthur, William (Cornwall) Sullivan, Donal
Delany, William M'Kean, John Tennant, Harold John
Devlin, Chas. Ramsay (Galway) Mansfield, Horace Rendall Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.)
Devlin. Joseph (Kilkenny, N.) Mitchell, Edw. (Fermanagh, N.) Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Mooney, John J. Thomas, D. Alfred (Merthyr)
Donelan, Captain A. Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen) Tomkinson, James
Doogan, P. C. Murphy, John Toulmin, George
Douglas, Charles M. (Lanark) Nannetti, Joseph P. Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Elibank, Master of Newnes, Sir Ceorge Wallace, Robert
Ellis, John Edward (Notts.) Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South) Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)
Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan) Norton, Capt. Cecil William Wason, Jn. Cathcart (Orkney)
Fenwick, Charles O'Brien, James F. X. (Cork) White, Luke (York. E. R.)
Ferguson, R. C. Munro (Leith) O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Whiteley, George (York, W.R.)
Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmond O' Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.) Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Flavin, Michael Joseph O'Donnell. John (Mayo, S.) Wilson, Fred. W.(Norfolk, Mid.
Flynn, James Christopher O'Donnell, T. (Kerry W.) Wilson, John (Durham, Mid.)
Foster, Sir Walter (Derby Co.) O' Dowd, John Woodhouse, Sir J.T (Huddersf'd)
Freeman-Thomas. Captain F. O' Malley, William Young, Samuel
Fuller, J. M. F. O'Mara, James Yoxall, James Henry
Furness, Sir Christopher O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Gilhooly, James Palmer, Sir Chas, M. (Durham) TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr. Broadhurst and Mr. John Burns.
Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herb. John Partington, Oswald
Goddard, Daniel Ford Perks, Robert William
Agg-Gardner, James Tynte Bagot, Capt. Josceline FitzRoy Balfour, Kenneth R. (Christch.)
Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel Bailey, James (Walworth) Banbury, Sir Fredrick George
Allhusen, Augustus Hen. Eden Bain, Colonel James Robert Bartley, Sir George C. T.
Anson, Sir William Reynell Baird, John George Alexander Beach, Rt. Hn. Sir Mich. Hicks
Arnold-Forster. Rt. Hn. Hugh O. Balcarres, Lord Bignold, Arthur
Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John Balfour, Rt. Hon. G. W. (Leeds) Bigwood, James
Blundell, Colonel Henry Haslam, Sir Alfred S. Plummer, Walter R.
Bond, Edward Haslett, Sir James Horner Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Boulnois, Edmund Hatch, Ernest Frederick Geo. Pretyman, Ernest George
Bousfield, William Robert Hay, Hon. Claude George Pryce-Jones, Lt.-Col. Edward
Brodrick, Rt. Hon. St. John Heath, A. Howard (Hanley) Pym, C. Guy
Bull, William James Heath, James (Staffords., N.W.) Rasch, Sir Frederic Garne
Burdett-Coutts, W. Heaton, John Henniker Ratcliff, R. F.
Butcher, John George Henderson, Sir A. (Stafford, W. Reid, James (Greenock)
Campbell, Rt. Hn. J.A.(Glasgow Hickman, Sir Alfred Remnant, James Farquharson
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hoare, Sir Samuel Richards, Henry Charles
Cautley, Henry Strother Hogg, Lindsay Ridley, S. Forde (Bethnal Green
Cavendish, R. F. (N. Lancs.) Horner, Frederick William Ritchie, Rt. Hn. Chas. Thomson
Cavendish, V.C.W. (Derbyshire) Hoult, Joseph Robertson, Herbert (Hackney)
Cayzer, Sir Charles William Houston, Robert Paterson Rolleston, Sir John F. L.
Cecil, Lord Hugh (Greenwich) Howard, J. (Kent, Faversham) Rollit, Sir Albert Kaye
Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. A (Worc Howard, J. (Midd., Tottenham) Ropner, Colonel Sir Robert
Clive, Captain Percy A. Hozier, Hn. James Henry Cecil Round, Rt. Hon. James
Coates, Edward Feetham Hunt, Rowland Rutherford, W. W. (Liverpool)
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Johnstone, Heywood (Sussex) Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-
Coghill, Douglas Harry Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W.(Salop.) Sadler, Col. Samuel Alexander
Cohen, Benjamin Louis Kerr, John Sandys, Lt.-Col. Thos. Myles
Colston, Chas, Edw. H. Athole Knowles,. Sir Lees Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)
Cook, Sir Frederick Lucas Laurie, Lieut.-General Sharpe, William Edward T.
Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow) Simeon, Sir Barrington
Cripps, Charles Alfred Lawrence, Wm. F. (Liverpool) Sinclair, Louis (Romford)
Crossley, Rt. Hon. Sir Savile Lawson, Jn. G. (Yorks., N. R.) Sloan, Thomas Henry
Cubitt, Hon. Henry Lee, A. H. (Hants., Fareham) Smith, Abel H. (Hertford. East)
Dalkeith, Earl of Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage Smith, H. C (North'mb Tyneside)
Dalrymple, Sir Charles Leveson-Gower, Frederick N.S. Smith, James Parker (Lanarks.)
Davenport, William Bromley Llewellyn, Evan Henry Spear, John Ward
Denny Colonel Long, Col. Chas. W. (Evesham) Spencer, Sir E. (W. Bromwich)
Dewar, Sir T. R. (Tower Hamlets) Long, Rt. Hon. W. (Bristol, S.) Stanley, Hn. Arthur (Ormskirk)
Dickinson, Robert Edmond Lonsdale, John Brownlee Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Lancs.)
Dickson, Charles Scott Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft) Stirling-Maxwell, Sir John M.
Digby, John K. D. Wingfield- Lucas, Reginald J.(Portsmouth Stock, James Henry
Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred Stroyan, John
Doxford, Sir William Theodore Macdona, John Gumming Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley
Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin Maconochie, A. W. Talbot, Rt. Hn. J.G (Oxfd Univ.)
Dyke, Rt. Hn. Sir William Hart M'Arthur, Charles (Liverpool) Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)
Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas M'Calmont, Colonel James Thornton Percy M.
Faber, Edmund B. (Hants., W.) M'Killop, James (Stirlingshire) Tollemache, Henry James
Faber, George Denison (York) Malcolm, Ian Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.
Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst Manners, Lord Cecil Tuff, Charles
Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Maxwell, W.J.H. (Dumfriessh.) Valentia, Viscount
Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne Milner, Rt. Hn. Sir Frederick G. Vincent, Sir Edgar (Exeter)
Fitzroy, Hn. Edward Algernon Milvain, Thomas Walrond, Rt. Hn. Sir William H.
Flannery, Sir Fortescue Montagu, G. (Huntingdon) Warde, Colonel C. E.
Forster, Henry William Moon, Edward Robert Pacy Welby, Lt.-Col. A.G.E(Taunton)
Galloway, William Johnson Morgan, D. J. (Walthamstow) Welby, Sir Chas. G. E. (Notts.)
Gardner, Ernest Morrell, George Herbert Whiteley, H.(Ashton und. Lyne)
Gibbs, Hon. A. G. H. Morrison, James Archibald Whitmore, Charles Algernon
Gore, Hn. S.F. Ormsby-(Linc) Marton, Arthur H. Aylmer Willox, Sir John Archibald
Gorst, Rt. Hn. Sir John Eldon Mount, William Arthur Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E.R.
Goschen, Hon. George Joachim Mowbray Sir Robert Gray C Wilson-Todd, Sir W. H. (Yorks)
Goulding, Edward Alfred Murray, Rt. Hon. A. G. (Bute) Wodehouse, Rt. Hn. E. R. (Bath)
Graham, Henry Robert Murray, Charles J. (Coventry) Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm
Greene, Sir E. W (B'ryS Edm'nds Murray, Col. Wyndham (Bath) Wortley, Rt. Hn. C. B. Stuart-
Greene, W. Raymond-(Cambs. Newdegate, Francis A. N. Wylie, Alexander
Greville, Hon. Ronald Nicholson, William Graham Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Hall, Edward Marshall O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens Wyndham-Quin, Major W. H.
Hambro, Charles Eric Pease, Herbt. Pike (Darlington
Hamilton, Marq of (L'nd'nderry Peel, Hn. Wm. Robert Wellesley TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir Alexander Acland-Hood and Mr. Ailwyn Fellowes.
Hare, Thomas Leigh Percy, Earl
Harris, F. Leverton (Tynem'th) Pilkington, Colonel Richard
Harris, Dr. Fredk. R. (Dulwich) Platt-Higgins, Frederick

Original Question again proposed.

MR. O'MARA (Kilkenny, S.)

said he desired to draw attention to Sub-head B, "Land and Inland Water Transport Abroad, £300,000." On referring to the original Estimate he found that it was only for £115,000 Therefore, he could not understand how it came about that a Supplementary Estimate of £300,000, which was more than double the original Estimate, was now being asked for. Surely they ought to get nearer in their Estimates than that. He should like to have some explanation from the Secretary of State for War as to why this Estimate was so large. He remembered last year the Government askedfor£5,000,000 for transport of troops and remounts, but they had not been spending the money on remounts this year, and he should like an explanation as to how this Estimate had grown so large.


said he did not know whether his hon. friend intended to mark his disapproval of this Estimate by moving a reduction. but if he did not he should certainly do so himself. It was a most inconvenient and a most disrespectful thing, nearly as disrespectful as moving the closure, that a man who had as good a right to speak as any member of the Government should be closured without a single word of explanation of a satisfactory character in regard to huge Supplementary Estimates like this. He held the opinion that this system of Supplementary Estimates was unsatisfactory and undesirable altogether. He did not know why it was mot possible to make proper Estimates, and have them discussed in the ordinary way, instead of coming down to ask for £2,700,000. That was not the way to conduct the affairs of the country, and he doubted if the Secretary for War could defend a proposition of that kind. He was very much afraid that a great many of these Supplementary Estimates were suddenly sprung upon Parliament in the hope that they might somehow or other get quietly through without raising any particular discussion, or bring any large amount of criticism to bear upon them. He asked for an explanation as to why this enormous sum was being asked for. He had been in the House for a longer time than the Secretary of State for War, who was now a member of the Cabinet, but he would not take the amount of this Estimate to join the present Cabinet, because, after all, one must draw the line somewhere. He asked the right hon. Gentleman to make inquiries, and he would find that it was not usual to propose Supplementary Estimates for such enormous sums without some explanation. The system seemed to have grown of putting on Supplementary Votes items which must have been anticipated when the ordinary Estimates were framed, and therefore they were entitled to some explanation. The way to get these Estimates through, and to occupy only a reasonable time with them, was to have a little patience.


Is the hon. Member now addressing himself to the whole Vote?


said he was addressing himself to Vote 6, Item B, relating to Land and Inland Water Transport Abroad.


I would ask the hon. Member to confine his remarks to that item. I am afraid be has been wandering a great deal beyond that.


said that perhaps the most concise way in which he could bring his attention and the attention of the House to this particular item of £300,000 was to move a reduction of £100,000. Matters would be facilitated if there was a little more patience and the closure was not used in an offensive way.


The hon. Member is not entitled to reflect upon the action of the Committee. The closure is not the action of a particular Member but the action of the Committee.


said he was not reflecting on the Chairman's discretion in accepting the closure nor upon the action of the House, but he referred to the individual action of one hon. Gentleman.


The hon. Member is not entitled to do that. It is a well-known Rule of the House, which has been laid down over and over again, that when once the House has decided upon the closure no Member is entitled to go back and reflect upon the action of the House or upon the Member who has moved the closure. [AN HON. MEMBER: We will fight it every time it comes up.]

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Item, Vote 6, Sub-head B (Land and Inland Water Transport Abroad), be reduced by £100,000."—(Mr. William Redmond.)


said that a very large porton of this Estimate came under the same explanation that he had given before, for it had to do with the charges for the conveyance of building material in South Africa, which, owing to a mistake, had been omitted from the original Estimate. About half of the items for land transport abroad was for the conveyance of building materials, and the other was mainly due to the large quantity of stores that had to be moved about.


said there had already been a little omission of £200,000 in the original Estimate, and here was another little item of £300,000 which had also been overlooked. This was another item which their officers in South Africa had forgotten and which could not be included in the original Estimates, because the War Office did not find it out. It was almost futile to discuss an Estimate of this kind.


wanted to know at what rate these materials had been conveyed. The amount charged was very large indeed. It was brought out during the war that the rate was one-third of a penny per mile and it was subsequently reduced to one-fourth of a penny per mile.

And, it being half-past Seven of the clock, the Chairman left the Chair to make his Report to the House.

The Committee report Progress; to sit again this evening.

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