HC Deb 13 June 1904 vol 135 c1486

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he has now any information confirming or contradicting the statements of the native Chiefs Umzimkulu and Umhalla that natives in the Transvaal mines are convicted for trivial offences, and after the expiry of their sentences are sent, against their will, for six months service in the mines.


I am informed by Lord Milner that in no case has a native on discharge from gaol been employed to work for a fresh master. On expiration of his sentence a native is required to complete his service with his registered employer provided the latter desires his return, otherwise the option is given him of seeking a fresh employer or returning home. The statements of these native chiefs appear, therefore, to have been founded upon some misapprehension.


Will the right hon. Gentleman inquire as to the circumstances which gave rise to this misapprehension on the part of the natives who made the complaint to their chiefs?

[No answer was audible].