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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 30

The Native Department

The Native Department.

It had been said that during the course of debate that the Native Department ought to be abolished and that it was no longer required. He took this as the very strongest testimony that could be borne to the success of the administration of Native affairs during the last three years. If the Government had brought Native affairs to that pass that they required no Native Department and no particular provision from the Government of the day, then it followed to his mind most conclusively, that the conduct of Native affairs had not been bad during the past three years. It had been said page 9 that the Native Department ought to be reduced, but what was the expenditure as proposed by the Estimates last session for this Department? It amounted in all to less than £4000, and when they remembered the days when the Native Department cost, not £4000, but £100,000, they would see that it was not now a very expensive department. There was, of course, connected with the Native Department the Native Land Court, which was doing valuable work and coat some £12,000 or £13,000 per year. No one, however, proposed, so far as he had heard, that the Native Land Court should be abolished. To his mind it was absolutely essential that the Native Land Court should carry out its work. During the three years, between 1880 and 1884, it had clothed with European title 3,425,000 acres. From January, 1885, to 1887, or in two years and three months, they had passed through the Native Land Court no less than 3,489,294 acres;