Black and White Budget, Transvaal Special, No. 1

4 BLACK AND WHITE wished to trek back and occupy still more completely the land they had passed through. The British, however, stood by their supremacy, and upheld what was called the Orange River Sovereignty. The more unruly o f the Orange River Boers, however, took advantage o f a K a ffir War and a Whig Government to press their claims for inde­pendence and in 1854 the Orange Free State sprang into existence by a convention signed at Bloemfontein. This independence was given in spite o f the express wish o f avery large number o f settlers to remain under the tried benefits o f British Rule. As, however, independence was granted, these law -abiding settlers made the best o f the matter and rendered the Orange Free State a model and example to their quarrelsome and tyrannical neighbours in the Transvaal. I he Transvaal was not united under one rule till u 60, there being up to that time the four Republics o f Potchefstroom , Lydenberg, Utrecht, and Zoutpansberg. Never was there such hate as existed between the Boers and the blacks. And this hate has not died out. The Boers will yet have good cause to remember it. In 1S76 the State purse was empty, and the whole country was on the verge o f bankruptcy and civil war.T o save the Boers from themselves and from Seccokuni, the British Government stepped in and annexed the Transvaal The whole country was in favour of this annexation, almost the only malcontent being a Mr Paul K ru ger, whom age has not taught wisdom. H e was the only member of the Executive Council who refused to accept British Government. Taking advantage o f British inactivity and easy-going administration, Air. K rug ergot up two protests against the new Government and twice visited England— to no purpose. For once in away, the Boers had real reason to complain o four administration. W e were too interested in Eastern affairs to give the Transvaal Boers what we had promised all at once. W e secured for the Transvaal peace and safety, instead o f continual native war but the Government was still insufficent. Paul Kruger chuckled and rubbed his hands'. B rer Kruger lay low. H e had little sympathy for Sir Garnet W olseley, in spite o f the latter’s victories over Seccokuni. And when Sir Garnet rushed off to England to invent new uniforms for the day when he should be Comm ander-in-Chief, B rer Kruger became the uncle and father o f his people. Then came the revolt— and M ajuba Hill. Sir George C olley was a soldier, if not. 1 General, and died on the field o f battle. Our Prime Minister was a sentimental jntlem an, with an old man’s craving for economy. The forces sent out to the Cape /vere never used the dead lay dishonoured and unrevenged. In August, 1 8 S 1, we signed away our prestige in South Africa. The Transvaal Boers got their independence, but on the condition that the self- government was “subject to the suzerainty o f Her Majesty.” Mr. Kruger promised Sir Hercules Robinson that there would be equal protection for British subjects and Transvaal citizens, and equal burgher rights. The Transvaal Boers had now their chance. They had an admirable model in the Orange Free State and when gold was found and the U itlanders flocked in, they had the money at their disposal with which to give adequate police protection and proper government. Instead o f that, they abused their trust. Their officers were filled with corruption, their government was tyrannous beyond description. From plain and simple burghers they became the death-dealing parasites o f healthy and vigorous activity. The men who worked the mines, who pushed the trade, who made the country, were aliens,
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