Manawatu Times , 17 July 1905, Page 2
The Minister of Public Works informed a deputation which urged upon him tbe purchase of the Manawatu Bailway that "he could complete a line as serviceable at a lesser cost than the Company would probably ask." It is not recorded that the deputation told the Minister that he was talking flapdoodle, but he was. Apart from the mere outlay on construction, the cost of acquiring land for a new alternative line would run into more, money twice or three times over that the Company's property could be bought for if they are prepared to sell at anything like the figure offered during the course of the abortive negotiations of a few years back. Apart from the debt of gratitude which the Colony owes the Wellington and Manawatu Bailway Company for the part it has taken in developmental work, and tbo fair and generous way it has treated the publio during the whole of its career, it is entitled to ordinary fair treatment on business lines. If i. does not receive this, and is taunted into answering threats with reprisals the Ministry will have only itself to thank. The acquirement of this private lino is a stop which the Government will be forced to undertake as a corollary to the completion of the Main Trunk railway; but we are satisfied the conntry would never sanction the deliberate squeezing out of the Company or any other exhibition of trust tactics of a similar character. We are surprised that a responsible Minister should have the temerity to even hint at such a thing.