HC Deb 25 June 1906 vol 159 c640

I beg to ask the Undersecretary of State for the Colonies whether Lord Selborne's long-continued efforts to obtain sufficient evidence for the prosecution of Withaner, the compound manager of the Croesus Mine, who in March last admitted to the Superintendent of Foreign Labour, in the presence of witnesses, that he had flogged Chinese coolies in the mine, have yet been attended with success; and, if not, whether he can say what additional evidence, besides an admission of guilt by the accused, corroborated by other oral testimony, is required by the law of the Transvaal to insure conviction for a criminal offence in the courts of that colony.


The Secretary of State has not yet been informed whether a prosecution has been undertaken, but he has addressed a further inquiry to Lord Selborne on the subject. I cannot tell what degree and character of evidence are necessary to establish certainty of guilt under the law of the Transvaal. Each case has no doubt to be considered upon its merits rather than in obedience to any rigid rule.

In reply to a further Question,


said the Secretary of State would not interfere with the discretion of the authorities in South Africa in this matter.