§ 51. Mr. OUTHWAITE
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he has official information to the effect that the local Government at Johannesburg intends to take most rigorous action if the strikers resort to violence; and can he state if Imperial troops are to be utilised for this purpose?
I would refer the hon. Member to the information which I gave the House yesterday, which showed that it was necessary to employ the troops, but that the strike has been settled. Perhaps I may be permitted to read to the House two telegrams which I have received, one last night and the other half an hour ago:The Governor-General of the Union of South Africa to the Secretary of State for the Colonies.(Received Colonial Office, 9.23 p.m., 7th July. 1913.)Large number of men resumed work to-day and some mills restarted: rest of men expected to resume tomorrow. Funeral this afternoon of persons killed passed off without disturbance, and all quiet in Johannesburg now, 9 p.m.215The Governor-General of the Union of South Africa to the Secretary of State for the Colonies.(Received Colonial Office, 1.30 p.m., 8th July, 1913.)General resumption of work along reef. It is to be noted that along whole fifty miles of reef no serious collision between troops and strikers. Away from Johannesburg, which was main centre of disorder, no case has been reported to me of troops firing on people. In Johannesburg itself am informed that troops did not fire except where disorder was most serious. There is reason to believe some deaths were due to indiscriminate shooting by rioters themselves, but am making close inquiry into this.—GLADSTONE.
§ Mr. OUTHWAITE
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether he has any official information yet as to the cause of the contact between the troops and the people which is stated in the cablegrams received to have been due to the breaking up of public meetings in Johannesburg?
No, Sir. I have asked for all those particulars and shall no doubt receive them in due course.