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The prospect of New Zealand taking control, of what used to be German Samoa does,not appear to-be welcomed by the' traders, planters, and natives, who. it is stated, would have preferred that Samoa should have become a Crown colony directly under the British Colonial Office. ■• ■ ' "

Speaking on the subject (says the " New Zealand Herald 1'), Mr *E. F. Nelson, who has business interests'• in. Samoa, Imtwho is. at present in Auckland, said . that the administration of ' the Cook and Savage Islands of New Zealand had not been of such a charao- | tp.r as to make Samoa particularly 'happy at the prospect, of coming under a. similar control. The Dominions, when they secured ■ control of outlying: * islands, were too apt to treat them as > .' thauffh they were,parts of the governins. Dominion itself, whereas.the conditions existing needed totally" different handling. Great Britain, .in dealing, with the outlying dependencies—-pos-sibly because the latter were much farther removed than would be the case with a.nv of the Dominions—realised the need for specialVtreatment,' .a. nd> while exercising; a-.proper , supervision,: crave -^he. inhabitants a much greaterl »ay in the control of their destinies.

Incidentally. Mr Nelson mentioned that the influenza outbreak had prejudiced New Zealand in the eyes of the natives, for while the epidemic had raged in what was formerly German. Samoa the< American area, had been free.

"If New Zealand desired to carry out its mandatory powers to the' satisfaction of the Samoan population-It must not endeavour to have a preferential tariff for New Zealand goods. At present all goods entered an an cqual'basis, and to change that system would mean the,HDsetting of the- whole of the present trade. It must be realised, too, that Samoa had always been self-sup-porting:, and that,; therefore, it was entitled to a large measure of self-cbn-trol. The old system of, a nominated i council to act in an advisory capacity had'been fairly, satisfactory, but the council should now .be made elective, and given more power. Above all, it must be realised that what was excellent in New Zealand would possibly be useless in Samoa.

One of the great problems- in Samoaj Mr Nelson added, was that of labour.

To him it seenied that if the plantations were to continue successful, indentured labour was a nece&sdty, but the old system. which did not make it compulsorilv'for the Chinese to be repatriated to their own country within a certain time, should be' changed. Under this ■ system many , Chinese were, re-inden-ttired time and again, and, owing to their lonsr residence, were mixing with ' the Samoan pirls. This was not desir-. ■■ able, and to remedy the fault he sug-. (rested that it should be made comnul-" sory for the Chinese to bereturned totheir own country within- five, or even V■■ ■ three, years/of"their time of being:first> '"'■> indentured,; V: ■'■ ":: : ■-.* ;.;-:-';:'-H

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Bibliographic details

CONTROL OF SAMOA., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9592, 23 April 1919

Word Count

CONTROL OF SAMOA. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9592, 23 April 1919

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