HC Deb 26 August 1907 vol 182 c157
MR. HAROLD COX (Preston)

I beg to ask the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he has yet received precise information with regard to the essential provisions of the Bill introduced into the Transvaal Legislature for prolonging the Transvaal Labour Ordinance.


The Secretary of State understands that the essential points of the Bill are (1) the Labour Importation Ordinance and Regulations are kept alive in respect of each labourer now in the country until the expiry of the existing contract for three years and, in addition, in the case of each labourer, for such further period, not exceeding two months, as will enable repatriation in accordance with the Ordinances to take place; and (2) existing bonds entered into by importers to repatriate labourers at their own cost at the end of the contracts are kept alive.


Then the same Ordinance has in fact been re-enacted?


said that the same Ordinance had been re-enacted with a provision that the mineowner was bound to pay the cost of repatriation, though no renewal would be allowed.


asked whether the servile conditions, expressly prohibited by the terms of the Constitution, were to be re-enacted for three years.


said that the Ordinance had not yet come to this country, and he could not forecast what would be the action of the Government upon it. But it appeared to him that the Transvaal Government had preferred to terminate rather than to touch the details of the system of Chinese labour which prevailed.