HC Deb 17 December 1906 vol 167 c1050

I beg to ask the Prime Minister whether his attention has been called to the proclamation that was issued by Sir George Napier, the governor of Cape Colony, in May, 1843, as a preliminary to the annexation of Natal, declaring that there shall not be in the eye of the law any distinction or disqualification whatever founded on mere distinction of colour, origin, language, or creed, but that the protection of the law in letter and in substance shall be extended impartially to all alike; whether this proclamation has at any time been withdrawn or modified; and, if not, whether His Majesty's Ministers will take steps to ensure the observance in letter and in substance of the promises made in the name of His Majesty's predecessor upon the Throne.


The proclamation to which my hon. friend refers was that by which Natal was made into a Colony, and was issued many years before the Colony, after various changes, received complete self-government. When a full Legislature was instituted it had the ordinary powers to legislate without restriction, subject only to the assent of the Governor and the power of disallowance by the Crown.