THE NEW CONSTITUTION CRITICISED.
The Head Committee of Hat Yolk has furnished to Reuters agent at Pretoria the following summary of a communication from the Central Committee to the Governing Bodies and members of Het Yolk :~ " General Botha, on behalf of the committee, has issued to the Dutch members of Het Yolk, a short resume of the Constitution, rendered necessary by the nonpublication of an official Dutch version. This resume is followed by a conciso criticism oi the chiof points which, he says, will cause universal dissatisfaction and even indignation owingf to the evident d^ep distrust of the Transvaal public, and particularly of the Boers which is revealod by them. " Under the Constitution the Government is entirely independent of the Legislature, even in regard to salaries of officials?. Moreover, a quarter o? the Legislature being nominated, the scale will alwa>s turn on the side favoured by the Government, and disastrous proposal will easily bB carried, such as the thirty millions war contribution. The powers of the Legislature are so limited that it will bo more of a debating society than a serious Parliament, financial proposals emanating from the Government, which v totally independent of the people's representatives. "The denial to Boßr representatives of the right to use their own language, making them dependent in this respect on the wliitmoftln chairman, is impracticable and humi iiiting. " Tlr> proposed qvadrennial redistribu tion General Botha continue 1;;, is calculated to gi?e the rul ing party a further lease r.f ;>!B-"«. The atipuU tion of a deposit of £100 from Parliamentary candidata'3 i 3 derioiiQced as a bar to the working mai, whilo the absence of a limit; to election expanses favours rich candidates—two provisions demonstrating the onesklodness of the Constitution and the distrust tantertained of the masse?, whi n.h i-s depl^rab'e in a country like fcho Transvial, where the majority are poor, and capitalists fcousequent'y wield unusual j:ower. ; "The manifesto concludes with 'the ex pression of a hope for a speedy change in the Constitution and for the realisation on the part of the British people arid Government of the fact that tho Transvaal's prosperity can only be advanced by their placing a manly trust to the people, and by the maintenance of those principles of justice and equity which have made the British Constitution an example to the world, but the essentials of which have been ignored in this instance. The Central Co mmittee leaves the final decision regarding the Constitution to the approaching Congress of Het Yolk."
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Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXII, Issue 6603, 23 June 1905
Boers Indignant. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXII, Issue 6603, 23 June 1905
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