A considerable number of repatriates have reached Lagos from Brazil. They seem to have been Brazilian born, and yet they still speak the language of Yoruba. They say that the negroes of Brazil generally wish to return to Africa, the Creoles being the least desirous. Poverty, however, prevented many.
The Governor of Lagos Sir Alfred Moloney, was able to inform a deputation of them that the African Steamship Company had agreed to run a vessel (the Biafra) between Lagos and Brazil, the fare being made as low as possible. It is thought there may be a reciprocal trade – Negroes going to Brazil , where there is much demand for labour, on the same system as the Coolies from India, with the idea of their returning with their savings. The fact is a remarkable one – suggestive of the contrast betwixt the spontaneity of free labour and the cruel coercion of the old African slave trade.
It suggests also one solution of the problem how to civilize West Africa [!]. Even in Liberia the black immigrants from the United States hold quite a different social position from the native Africans. Under British rule and protection there would be far greater scope for economical , moral and religious progress.
The Oil Rivers District – Major Macdonald , who has been lately engaged at Berlin in aiding to define the German and British boundaries north of the Cameroons, is now, it is understood, appointed to an extended consular jurisdiction at the Oil Rivers , almost equivalent to administration. He is also to act practically as a representative of the British Government on the Niger itself, and is still further to hold the place of Consul to the German possessions in West Africa .
France in Western Central Africa – A new association has been formed in France , the object of which is to promote the interests of France in Africa. The Comité de l’Afrique Française will use all means to develop the influence of France and French commerce in Western Central and Northern Africa. They state that in the division of Africa, France is entitled to the largest share in West Central and North Africa, from the efforts she has made for the development of Algeria, Tunis, Senegal, and the Congo district.
Expeditions of exploration are to be favoured, to explore the region between the Congo and Lake Tchad, a footing on the north of which lake France is to acquire. It is important to obtain the rights of first occupants. A number of highly influential persons have joined the Committee.
- Sir Claude Maxwell MacDonald (‘Men of the Day. No. 825.’) by Sir Leslie Ward chromolithograph, published in Vanity Fair 10 October 1901 – National Portrait Gallery UK