asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies why the Chief Justice of the Gold Coast has been appointed as commissioner to carry out an examination of official salaries in that colony; and whether he will consider in this and similar cases having an inquiry carried out by a commissioner who had no local connection with the colony.
The inquiry into official salaries and conditions of service which is at present being conducted is not confined to the Gold Coast but covers all four West African Colonies. The decision to appoint Sir Walter Harragin was made after a prolonged search for a Commissioner, with the requisite qualifications, who was not connected with West Africa. To avoid further delay, which was already causing some anxiety among European and African officials in West Africa, I appointed Sir Walter Harragin, whose experience has been mainly outside West Africa and in whose impartiality I have entire confidence. With regard to the second part of the Question, I am not prepared to consider the appointment of a new Commissioner for the present inquiry which is already in train.
If his own Department are concerned with the matter with which he is dealing, which after all is only a very small portion of the bulk of West Africa, I do not think that I could give the assurance asked for.