MINISTERS AND SYNDICATES.
TO THE EDITOR. Sir, —ln regard to the resolution moved by the Hon, Air Rolleston in respect to the Premier’s connection with the AngloContinental Mining Syndicate, which came before the House yesterday, I think that all fair-minded persons will commend the resolution. No objection can be taken, I think, to Mr Seddon being on the directorate of any company or business concern so long as the business of such is not brought in relation with the departments of the State ; but his connection with this mining syndicate and his position as Minister of Mines seems anomalistic, and leads one to think of the impurity of government. But the inconsistency of the present “ Liberal ” Government is becoming proverbial. For many years some of the Civil servants in a certain department were in the habit of taking private work after office hours, thereby augmenting their salaries, and no doubt there were others who were billetless who would have been glad of the work. However, doubtless complaints were made to the Government, for instructions were issued last year from Wellington that all private work was to be discontinued, and I believe is so. Now, is it fair and consistent of the Right Hon. Mr Seddon to put the veto on the Civil servants of his various departments and at the same time himself accept a directorship of a company or act on the Advisory Board of a company (remuneration said to be something substantial) that is almost bound to have business relations with at least one of the departments that he is at the head of, controls, and directs ? The result of yesterday’s proceedings without a doubt points conclusively to the “ writing on the wall.” The Seddonian “Liberalism” is doomed. The Government’s majority is becoming less and less. Their persistent class legislation is proving ruinous, and the more sensible of the working class are beginning to see that this eternal one-sided legislation is damaging to the country’s prosperity, and is simply for office and power. What between foisting bankrupt banks upon the colony, the undoubtedly irregular purchase of Bushy Park Estate, the attempt of the_ Minister of Lands to over-ride the* decision of the Supremo Court in the Horowhenua case and legislate for the extinction of Crown grants, which everyone looks upon as an inviolable title, to satisfy—well, I won’t say what, and the most extraordinary revelations in the Supreme Court of the Ward Farmers’ Company, how can we wonder at the Government finding themselves officially expiring? The sooner this “Seddonian Liberalism” is relegated to obscurity the better. And no doubt when the Opposition assume the reins of Government (and there are many excellent men in their ranks who would make admirable administrators) we shall enjoy a decidedly purer political atmosphere—a complete extinction of the corrupt “spoils to the victors” system, and a taste of “true” Liberalisni.—lam, etc., Koura. Dunedin, October 30.
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MINISTERS AND SYNDICATES., Evening Star, Issue 10459, 1 November 1897