§ MR. LOUGH (Islington, W.)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies what is the explanation of the increase in the ordinary expenditure of Northern Nigeria from £62,579 in 1900–1901 to £482,889 in 1903–4; what proportion of this expenditure is for armed forces and what is the nature and object of any military expeditions that are now going on; and whether, in view of the amount of the local revenue and of the commerce of the country, and of the fact that the expenditure of last year has been met by a contribution of £50,000 from Southern Nigeria and a Parliamentary grant of £405,000, he can see his way to undertake that immediate efforts will be made to reduce this outlay.
§ MR. LYTTELTON
The ordinary expenditure of Northern Nigeria in 1903–4 is estimated at £382,889, not £482,889. As shown in the statement presented to Parliament (Cd. 2101) the expenditure of £62,579 in 1900–1 does not include expenditure amounting to £145,400 on the West African Frontier Force in that year. The expenditure on the Force in 1903–4 is estimated at £167,591 out of the total of £382,889, leaving £215,398 as the estimated ordinary civil expenditure. The reasons for the increase of expenditure are explained in Sir Frederick Lugard's Annual Reports which have been presented to Parliament. No military expeditions are now going on. The local revenue, though expanding, is still very small. No unnecessary expenditure is incurred. It is hoped that the increase of local revenue may admit of a reduction in the grant-in-aid from Imperial funds in future; but no undertaking in the sense suggested by the hon. Member can be given.