Tuesday, July 20. ■ The business in the Legislative Council was unimportant.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Mr. Stewart gave notice to move for leave to introduce the Friendly Societies Act Amendment Act, 1880 ; and also to ask a question re Mr. Parnell’s committal for contempt of Court. The Hon. W. Rollestou said that by this time the appointment of an Inspector of Prisons for the colony would probably have been made. In the present state of the colony such an appointment was imperatively necessary. , The Hon. John Hall said the session, was too far gone, and there was too much business on hand for anything being done this year regarding amending the law of libel. - ,
Mr. Reader Wood was allowed a week’s leave of absence.
The House was occupied during the remainder of the afternoon sitting with the Maori Prisoners Trial Bill in committee. In reply to questions as to what Government proposed to do regarding the trial of prisoners, ; ' The Hon. J. Bryce said it was plainly the intention of the Government to release the men without the necessity of resorting to a trial. It would be no use attempting to try them. Enough had already transpired to prove that even if they were brought into Court they could not possibiy be got to plead. It was nonsense to say that these men had resorted to ploughing operations with a view of getting their claims brought under the notice of a judicial authority. In ‘ accordance with the orders of Te Whiti they had resorted to ploughing outrages for the express purpose of extending their own possessions. They had shown a thorough contempt for European law, and had asserted that Te Whiti was their sole lawgiver, in fact their conduct throughout had gone to show that they were utterly indifferent to our Courts, and would nob be got to plead at all. ’ - Mr. J. Sheehan said that, as a matter of policy, they should be subjected to trial; If they were not, they would be sent back and the opinion would get abroad that there was no law that could touch them. They would at once jump to the conclusion that Te Whiti’s prophecies had come true, and by that means a great evil would be wrought. He would propose as an amendment to the Bill a clause providing, that these prisoners should be brought to trial before release. - He would move that as an additional clause to the Bill. ( Mr. De Lautour moved the following
amendment on clause 2—“ This Act shall remain in force until the last day of Oc-^-'
tober, 1880, and no longer, unless the Governor shall be satisfied that; it is necessary from time to time by, proclamation to extend the date during which the Act shall remain in force for any period not exceeding three months ; provided, also, that no such proclamal ion shall have any force or effect at the close of the next session o_f Parliament.” The amendment was agreed to, and the clause as amended passed, as did also the whole Bill. EVENING SITTING. After a long and tedious' discussion on the Native Land Sales BUI, . at 1.15 the House divided on a motion to adjourn the debate, which motion was lost by 27 noes to 18 ayes. After this motion had been negatived, Mr. Hamlin moved the adjournment of the House, and a desultory discussion followed. t : Mr. Hall regretted that' members wasted time in preference to going Con with the business, and accused: the native members of being put up to talk against time, and to “ stonewall’.” Messrs. Te Wheoro and Tawhai denied this. ■ j/ Mr. Hall stated that ho would agree to adjourn the debate if it were to be resumed at 2.30 next day. Mr. Sheehan and others objected to the private members’ day being taken for Government business. ’
Ultimately the motion for the adjournment of the House was, negatived, and the adjournment of the. debate till 2.30 next day was agreed to. ? The House rose at 2.15 a.m. Wednesday, July 22. The House met at 2. 30. Mr. Dick gave notice that he would ask leave to introduce the Public Entertainments Prohibition Bill. Replying to questions, it was stated that Government would not lose sight of the importance of the telephone in connection with railway stations,but using that instrument in public business. Instructions had been given to registrars under the Electors Registration Act, to make the rolls as complete as possible, there were difficulties in the, way of and with that object to place thereon or add thereto names of persons of whose qualifications they are satisfied, and it was the registrar’s duty to assure himself of the right of every man to have his name retained on the roll.—The report of the Life Assurance Department would be on the table in about five dr six weeks. —The Public Works Statement, would probably be made next week.—Mr. Purnell, a barrister at Ashburton, had complained verbally that he had been committed for seven days for contempt of Court, and enquiries would be made into the facts of the case, if a proper written complaint were made. ■ •■■■>■
The following Bills were introduced and read a first time District Courts Act, 1858, Amendment Bill, and Treasury Bills Bill. The debate on the second reading of the Native Land Sales Bill was resumed. 1
Mr. Tole argued that the Bill should' have been considered in connection with the whole of the native policy, but he would not oppose its passage. Mr. Montgomery argued that natives should be appointed to : co-operate with the Land Boards in dealing with these lands. He supported the Bill generally. Mr. Bryce replied, i He ' complained that his connection with, the Pateteroßlockhad been most grossly misrepresented; What he aimed at doing was to show that the system hitherto in operation had been bad, and had been* abused, and, in doing so ho fully expected i to be attacked ; hut the attack made by ; ■lthe member for Mount-Ida- hadbeen-' much more bitterly personal than he ever expected. The assertion, that he had
stopped the survey of tho land at the instigation of the European speculators w as false. The deputation that waited on him on the subject was a deputation of Maori*, and it waa at their instigation aloae the survey had been stopped. Advances had been made upon the land in the loosest possible manner and there was very slight prospect indeed of the land ever being secured to the • Government. The Maori mind was in a state of irritation at tho whole thing, and under these circumstances it was not wonderful Government should desire to get well rid of it. Seeing no hope of getting the block, the next best thing was to get the allowances repaid. Nearly all the land had been got through the Court, the titles ascertained, and Government otherwise placed in a fair way for getting back their advances. The proclamation had been kept on the land and would not be removed until the advances had been repaid. That waa not, as had been asserted, playing a double game. On his part, he had never at any time been guilty of such practices, having never all his life told a lie, or otherwise been guilty of misrepresentation. He also combated the assertion that the Chief Judge of the Land Court had been guilty of irregu- ' larities in connection with this transaction. ' • ‘ Had he been guilty of the facts stated by the member for Mount Ida, he never could have lifted his head in that House again.
The motion for the second reading was put and carried on the voices. SirG. Grey said he would, in Committee, move an amendment whereby the natives would have the sole control of their own estates. Dr. Wallis moved that the franchise be extended to female freeholders. Mr. Seddon moved as an amendment that the. words f * be not ” be inserted. The debate was interrupted, and the House adjourned at 5.30.
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