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OTAGO PATRIOTIC COMMITTEE

BRITISH AND BELGIUM RELIEF.

AX ADDITIONAL £4,050 VOTED

OUR BOYS IN EGYPT. A meeting of the executive of the Otago Patriotic and General Welfare Association was held in the Town Hall todav, and was attended by about 25 members. His Worship the Mayor (Mr J. B. Shacklock) presided. —Finance. — The hon. treasurers reported that the total receipts to date from, all sources amount to £41,197 13s 7d. Since last meeting of the executive the receipts haveamounted to £3,794 18s Bd, £2,335 lis lid being contributed to the Belgian fund. Since last meeting £3,000 had been remitted to the Belgian fund through the Belgian Consul, £I.OOO to the British relief fund. £SO for local relief, and £474 10s 7d for labor. Of the latter £216 lfs 7d was expended on Ocean Drive, £3O 16s on Portobello road, £43 9s 6d on Unitv Ground and Flagstaff planting, £BO '3s 9d on University wall, £53 16s 3d on Leith wall, £36 17s .id on Wallace street, and £l2 10s on accident insurance. The amount, standing to the credit of the association, £23.030. was invested with the Duncdin City Council at call, bearing interest at the rate of 3 per cent,, and £2,747 lis Pd was invested at call in the Bank of NewZealand.—lt was resolved that £3.000 be cabled to the Belgian relief fund and £1.050 to the British relief fund. £;jo of the. latter being contributed by the Navy League (local hraueh). and to be sent to the headquarters of the Navy League in London. —Relief Works.— Rev. F. ("1. dimming, chairman of the Employment and Relief Committee, reported" that, to date 90 applications for relief have been dealt with, while numerous applications have been declined as not coming within the sropo of this committees activities. The relief granted to date amounts to £205 Is 9d._ while 18 tons of coal have also been distributed. Wages paid to date on the various relief works amount to £1.785 5s 4d. The total number of men now employed is 131; 36 men are engaged on the Ocean drive, 54 on Leith wall. 24 on Flagstaff and Unitv Ground, 8 on Portobello road. and 9 at' Wallace street. He noted that the Citv Council were employing some 57 men on street works at 9s 4d per day. This had given very great offence to the men engaged on relief work, who were onlv paid" 8s per day. E. S. Wilaon, secretary of the Patriotic Demonstration Committer, in forwarding £BO, the net result of a. demonstration held in November last, said it was the desire of the. committee to expend money on the Leith wall above Union street. — The Town Clerk said the cost of this work would amount to £260.--Referred to the Finance Committee.

The Finance Committee reported that with reference to a letter from Captain Beaumont repayment of insurance premiums of men who have joined the forces, it was recommended that the matter should bo referred to the Government for their favorable consideration. — Adopted. The Mavor said the. 57 men referred to were not working with the men engaged on relief works. The position was that the council had authority to raise a loan for special street works, and it was in prosecution of these works that the men wc.ro engaged. So far as the wage paid was concerned, that was fixed by tho Arbitration Court.—Rev. Mr dimming said he was satisfied with the Mayor's explanation, but the position was nevertheless unfortunate. lie said the executive would be pleased to know that there were very few married men in the Citv out of employment. (Hear, hear.) The motion for tho adoption of tho report was carried. —Future. Meetings.— In accordance with notice of motion, Mr Roberts moved—" That the time lias now arrived when a- small executive, committee, should he appointed to deal with all matters connected with the Patriotic and General Welfare Association, with instructions to call the whole executive together only when considered necessary; that this inner executive consist of the Mayor, two treasurers, and five chairmen of different committees." —This was seconded by Mr Joachim.—-Mr M'Allen said instead" of creating a small inner executive there was good reason for enlarging it. The matter of recruiting- was a serious one, and the men who were running the country were largely to blame. Tho Government were not encouraging men to enlist. As far as the Railway Department was concerned, even the general manager, who was imported from England, could bo spared if necessary. Private firms were encouraging men to enlist. He, favored tho formation of small concentration camps.—Rev. R. S. Gray opposed the motion, and it was eventually resolved to alter the motion to read : " That the executive meet monthly in the meantime, and that matters of an urgent nature, should be dealt w«»h by the president, two hon. treasurers, and 'the chairman of the five sub-committees." This was carried unanimously. —Expeditionary Force.—

Mr F. W; Mitchell submitted tho report of the Expeditionary Force Committee, which stated that 25 volunteers were included from Otago in the Sarooan contingent, comforts having been supplied by the Ladies' Committee. A further sum from the regimental grants would be required for the men now in camp .at Trentham. Owing to the difficulty in obtaining- accurate information the committee were not able yet to ask for a definite amount. -The greatest difficulty was being experienced in obtaining • roll oi

i Otago members from headquarters at Wellington. Frequent applications had been made to the local defence office, but only promises could be obtained, and the committee were endeavoring now to get the information from headquarters. They thought it right to make the matter public now, as the absence of the information prevented adjustment with the provincial districts. There seemed to be no reason why so much delay should have occurred. _ Commenting upon tha lack of information from the Defence Department, Mr Mitchell remarked that it was a most extraordinary thing, as the men had been away from New Zealand for good many weeks, but yet the desired information could not be obtained, lie wished it to be clearly understood that it was not the fault of the local Defence Office.

The report was adopted, a requisition for binoculars, compasses, and revolvers for eight officers and 13 N.C.O.s coining from the officer commanding at Trenthani also being agreed to. —Co-operation in London. —

A letter was read from Mr Norman Dal-st-on, secretary of the .New Zealand War Contingent -Association, to Mr P. R. SaTgood, in winch tlio writer stated that the Otago Patriotic Committee could rely upon the most/ hearty co-operation of his association in matteis appertaining to the welfare of the Otago troops. They had a very strong representative committee of ladies and gentlemen, and it was hardly necescary for him to state that the ladies and their friends had been devoting untiring oi.ergy iu making comforts for the troops. iSomo 2CO Now Zealanders were training under Captain Dampen at Bulford camp, iu Wiltshire. The matter of keeping in touch with the -units in camp and at the front and receiving messages from or to them, whether in active service or after discharge, and conveying same to their relatives, would be attended to by the other appointed by the High Commissioner for .New Zealand. The association had two particular objects in view—the selection of a convalescent home and the erc'.-tion of recreation halls at Bulford camp, where the men might find newspapers, etc All parcels addressed to the oiiicc of the association would bo attended to. —Major Orbeli's Command.— Major Ritchie said that he had received a cable from Cairo from Major Orbell stating that there was no money available in the regimental funds for his men. The position was quite 61 tuple. Tlio committee had provided money for the infantry regiment to the extent of about £l,lOO, which was at the rate of £1 per man. There were throe squadrons of about 200 men each in tho mounted regiment, but they seemed to have been overlooked, the commanding officer having stated that he did not require any money, because he understood that it was lteing raised elsewhere, and he would not need to call on the Dunedin committee. JTc had had a conversation over tho matter, with tho result that it was now suggested that the committee should send the Mini of £2OO to tho squadron representing the sth Kegiment. which was located at Duncdiu. The 7ih regimental squadron was being provided for, and the 12th was already looked after. As the others were getting the money from elsewhere, he moved that it be an instruction to tho Finance Committee to remit at once the sum of £2OO to the sth regimental squadron in Egypt. Mr Hazlett. in seconding the motion, stated that the fact that Major Orbell had cabled showed that money war. wanted, and he thought it should be sent at once. The motion was carried, it being agreed that the amount should be cabled. —Recruits Wanted.— Colonel Sioneham. reporting f r the Recruiting Committee, stated that lately the committee had not. beet! able to do much owing to the election.:. Thcv had had two meetings, at which recruits had conn: forward, but there had been some rejections owing to phy.-ical icwmis. The Prime Minicner and others le.-ponsdilc had stated that tiiere were enough men coming forward, but tlr.-o d'-linite statements were misleading. They had i-tatccl that they bad ill! t;i ■ v r-u ; icy r'-nuiied. and that they nuthipat.-d no dilnui'lty hi getting jii'ji in the future. Hu.-h a .-latcmcnt made iiy those who were in authority would cause people to a.-.sume that tiiere was no great nece-sity to make an extra effort. And yet they knew that. Otago's | last quota should have been 700 men. but I they now found that there was a shortage of something like 400 men. The coirnnuI tee should tiring all prc.-sure pos.-iblo on the Defence Department, and have a strong organisation made, for it was a matter in which the Government, should bear the. expense. What was wanted was a strong < ommiUeo to go the | country making an appeal for men, just, as 'a committee had done recently making an 'appeal <>n behalf of the Belgian fund, lie bad been loVt that there were scores of 'men iu the country who tould ride anything and shoot well, .and they woe men who had no ties to keep them at horn-:'. The expense of such an organisation should certainly be borne hv the department, and the expenditure should not ioiih- out of any local patiiotie funds. Then there wa.s the matter of recruits who volunteered. When they did so they were not able to tret anything veiy clehuhe Irom the department. The speaker wart of opinion that concentration cam]'.- should be formed, as was the case u hen the main body were being trained during the first few week.-, they w; re uiuh r canvas. So far no Dunediii was concerned, the City had supplied her full number of men. but the quota from the other parts of the Otago militaiy <l>lrict hail not been made up. When it was admitted that Otago was 400 men short it would .seem that there was certainly something radically wrong in spite of tlio detinite statements which had been made thai, plenty of men were coming forward. There should be strong pressure brought to bear on the department to allow the commit too to have a free hand. "SEND TDK BOYS/' A most enthusiastic meeting was held at Palmcrstcn North on Saturday night in aid of the recruiting movement. The Opera-house was crowded. Hundreds of people waited on the road outside. The programme consisted of patriotic and speeches, which were repeated outside the building to those unable to gain admission. Captain Goldingham presided. .Mr liuick, M.P.. made a great patriotic speech, and r.tatcd that it, was far better to send young men to the front, and if that was not sufficient then ** we old fellows would have to join the. firing line." He was annoyed when he Toad the remarks of tho local Farmers' T'nion members that it was an inconvenient time to spare their boys, hecause they had cows to milk or some other excuse. " Send the boys:," said Mr liuick. "The women will do the milking if necessary, and it won't f\o them much harm." Fifty-five recruits volunteered. MESSAGE FROM THE MODERATOR OF THE CHURCH OF SCOTLAND. The Moderator of the Church of Scotland, the Right Rev. Professor Thomas Xicol, D.1)., says we can leave our destiny as a nation confidently in the hand of God, convinced of the righteousness of cur cause, and knowing that it was not greed of territory nor lust of power, but the maintenance of the plighted troth of nations and the defence of the weak and oppressed that actuated us in entering upon this war. 53 College. Bounds, Aberdeen. —October, the ' Navy. j.. J ; . .-ix... —: - —." _ -' - On Saturday the staff of Messrs Alex. Harris and Co, auctioneers, foregathered for the purpose of making a presentation to Sergeant Russell Hosie, who haa joined the aubtdance section or the Expeditionary Force. Serge-ant Hosio feelingly acknowledged tho reception of a cheque, a wristlet watch, and other article©, and every good wish was tendered to him for a safe return from the front. The local branch of the locomotive repair department, New Zea'and Railways, have forwarded us' 30s, being their ninth contribution to the local distress fund.

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OTAGO PATRIOTIC COMMITTEE, Evening Star, Issue 15675, 14 December 1914

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2,249

OTAGO PATRIOTIC COMMITTEE Evening Star, Issue 15675, 14 December 1914

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