April 23, 1902 (9th Parliament, 2nd Session)


Dominique Monet



An hon. member says, never. Then he does not share the opinion of his leader, the hon. member for Jacques Cartier, who said very plainly that he agreed with the very terms of the resolution. When will it be timely for us to express our opinion in the matter ? Will it be after the peace is concluded ? I say it will then be untimely for us to say anything about it, because the decision then will have been arrived at and there will be no use In our saying anything about it. The attitude of
the right hon. leader of the government and the hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. Monk) reminds me of that taken by a lawyer who, though he appeared to plead a case before the judge, would not speak. And when the judge said to him : Well, give me your opinion before I decide the case, the iawyer would reply : No, it is not time
now for me to plead the case, but when the judgment is rendered I will give my opinion. It seems to me that if we accept the view of those who claim that this is not the proper time for us to express our opinion, that time will never come. If we are to express an opinion at all, there can be no doubt that to-day is the proper time to do so. No valid reasons have been given why this resolution should be declared untimely, but on the contrary very good reasons can be given why it is now very opportune indeed.
Let us look back to what took place before the war broke out. A few months before war was declared, at a time when there were only rumours of war, the right hon. the leader of the government rose in his place in this House on the 31st July, and taking advantage of the silent consent of the whole House, proposed a resolution without having previously given notice. The first part of his resolution read as follows :
Resolved, that this House has viewed with regret the complications which have arisen in the Transvaal Republic, of which Her Majesty is suzerain, from the refusal to accord to Her Majesty's subjects now settled in that region any adequate participation in its government.
Then the resolution concluded :
That this House, representing a people which
has largely succeeded

Mind you, Sir, the very circumstance mentioned in support of the resolution I am quoting presents itself again to our consideration.
-which has largely succeeded, by the adoption of the principle of conceding equal political rights to every portion of the population, in harmonizing estrangements and in producing general content with the existing system of government, desires to express its sympathy with the efforts of Her Majesty's Imperial authority to obtain for the subjects of Her Majesty who have taken up their abode in Ihe Transvaal such measures of justice and political recognition as may be found necessary to secure them in the full possession of equal rights and liberties.
On the 31st July, 1S99, we considered it advisable for this House to pass a resolution assuring the British parliament that we sympathized with them in their efforts to secure to the Uitlauders of the Transvaal, who were still termed British subjects

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