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6. A Quasi-State
THE CHARTER OF THE BRITISH SOUTH AFRICA COMPANY,
1889 VICTORIA, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland Queen, Defender of the Faith.
To all to whom these presents shall come, Greeting.
Whereas a Humble Petition has been presented to Us in Our Council by (here follows a series of names).
And whereas the said Petition states amongst other things:That the Petitioners and others are associated for the purpose
of forming a Company or Association, to be incorporated, if to Us should seem fit, for the objects in the said Petition set forth, under the corporate name of The British South
Africa Company. That the existence of a powerful British Company, controlled
by those of Our subjects in whom We have confidence, and having its principal field of operations in that region of South Africa lying to the north of Bechuanaland and to the west of Portuguese East Africa, would be advantageous to the commercial and other interests of Our subjects in
the United Kingdom and in Our Colonies. That the Petitioners desire to carry into effect divers con
cessions and agreements which have been made by certain of the chiefs and tribes inhabiting the said region, and such other concessions agreements grants and treaties as the Petitioners may hereafter obtain within the said region or elsewhere in Africa, with the view of promoting trade commerce civilization and good government (including the regulation of liquor traffic with the natives) in the territories which are or may be comprised or referred to in such concessions agreements grants and treaties as
aforesaid. That the Petitioners believe that if the said concessions
agreements grants and treaties can be carried into effect, the condition of the natives inhabiting the said territories will be materially improved and their civilization advanced, and an organization established which will tend to the suppression of the slave trade in the said territories, and to the opening up of the said territories to the immigration of Europeans, and to the lawful trade and commerce of
Our subjects and of other nations. That the success of the enterprise in which the Petitioners
are engaged would be greatly advanced if it should seem fit to Us to grant them Our Royal Charter of incorporation as a British Company under the said name or title, or such other name and title, and with such powers, as to Us may seem fit for the purpose of more effectually carrying into
effect the objects aforesaid. That large sums of money have been subscribed for the
purposes of the intended Company by the Petitioners and others, who are prepared also to subscribe or to procure such further sums as may hereafter be found requisite for the development of the said enterprise, in the event of Our being pleased to grant to them Our Royal Charter of
incorporation as aforesaid. Now, therefore, We having taken the said Petition into Our Royal consideration in Our Council, and being satisfied that the intentions of the Petitioners are praiseworthy and deserve encouragement, and that the enterprise in the Petition described may be productive of the benefits set forth therein, by Our Prerogative Royal and of Our especial grace, certain knowledge and mere motion, have constituted erected and incorporated, and by this Our Charter for Us and Our Heirs and Royal successors do constitute erect and incorporate into one body politic and corporate by the name of The British South Africa Company the said James Duke of Abercorn, Alexander William George Duke of Fife, Edric Frederick Lord Gifford, Cecil John Rhodes, Alfred Beit, Albert Henry George Grey and George Cawston, and such other persons and such bodies as from time to time become and are members of the body politic and corporate by these presents constituted, erected and incorporated, with perpetual succession and a common seal, with power to break alter or renew the same at discretion, and with the further authorities, powers, and privileges conferred, and subject to the conditions imposed by this Our Charter: And We do hereby accordingly will ordain give grant constitute appoint and declare as follows (that is to say):
1. The principal field of the operations of The British South Africa Company in this Our Charter referred to as “the Company”) shall be the region of South Africa lying immediately to the north of British Bechuanaland, and to the north and west of the South African Republic, and to the west of the Portuguese Dominions.
2. The Company is hereby authorised and empowered to hold, use and retain for the purposes of the Company and on the terms of this Our Charter, the full benefit of the concessions and agreements made as aforesaid, so far as they are valid, or any of them, and all interests, authorities and powers comprised or referred to in the said concessions and agreements. Provided always that nothing herein contained shall prejudice or affect any other valid and subsisting concessions or agreements which may have been made by any of the chiefs or tribes aforesaid, and in particular nothing herein contained shall prejudice or affect certain concessions granted in and subsequent to the year 1880 relating to the territory usually known as the district of the Tati; nor shall anything herein contained be construed as giving any jurisdiction, administrative or otherwise, within the said district of the Tati, the limits of which district are as follows, viz., from the place were the Shasi River rises to its junction with the Tati and Ramaquaban Rivers, thence along the Ramaquaban River to where it rises and thence along the watershed of those Rivers.
3. The Company is hereby further authorised and empowered, subject to the approval of one of Our Principal Secretaries of State (herein referred to as “Our Secretary of State") from time to time, to acquire by any concession agreement grant or treaty, all or any rights interests authorities jurisdictions and powers of any kind or nature whatever, including powers necessary for the purposes of government, and the preservation of public order in or for the protection of territories, lands, or property comprised or referred to in the concessions and agreements made as aforesaid or affecting other territories, lands, or property in Africa, or the inhabitants thereof, and to hold, use and exercise such territories, lands, property, rights, interests, authorities, jurisdictions and powers respectively for the purposes of the Company, and on the terms of this Our Charter.
4. Provided that no powers of government or administration shall be exercised under or in relation to any such lastmentioned concession agreement grant or treaty, until a copy of such concession grant or treaty in such form and with such maps or particulars as Our Secretary of State approves verified as he requires, has been transmitted to him, and he has signified his approval thereof either absolutely or subject to any conditions or reservations; and provided also that no rights, interests, authorities, jurisdictions or powers of any description shall be acquired by the Company within the said district of the Tati as hereinbefore described, without the previous consent in writing of the owners for the time being of the concessions above referred to relating to the said district, and the approval of Our Secretary of State.
5. The Company shall be bound by and shall fulfill all and singular the stipulations on its part contained in any such concession grant or treaty as aforesaid, subject to any subsequent agreement affecting those stipulations approved by Our Secretary of State.
6. The Company shall always be and remain British in character and domicile, and shall have its principal office in Great Britain, and the Company's principal representative in South Africa, and the Directors shall always be natural born British subjects, or persons who have been naturalized as British subjects by or under an Act of Parliament of Our United Kingdom; but this Article shall not disqualify any person nominated a Director by this Our Charter, or any person whose election as a Director shall have been approved by Our Secretary of State, from acting in that capacity.
7. In case at any time any difference arises between any chief or tribe inhabiting any of the territories aforesaid and the Com
pany, that difference shall, if Our Secretary of State so require, be submitted by the Company to him for his decision, and the Company shall act in accordance with such decision.
8. If at any time Our Secretary of State thinks fit to dissent from or object to any of the dealings of the Company with any foreign power and to make known to the Company any suggestion founded on that dissent or objection, the Company shall act in accordance with such suggestion.
9. If at any time Our Secretary of State thinks fit to object to the exercise by the Company of any authority, power, or right within any part of the territories aforesaid, on the ground of there being an adverse claim to or in respect of that part, the Company shall defer to that objection until such time as any such claim has been withdrawn or finally dealt with or settled by Our Secretary of State.
10. The Company shall to the best of its ability preserve peace and order in such ways and manners as it shall consider necessary, and may with that object make ordinances (to be approved by Our Secretary of State) and may establish and maintain a force of police.
11. The Company shall to the best of its ability discourage and, so far as may be practicable, abolish by degrees, any system of slave trade or domestic servitude in the territories aforesaid.
12. The Company shall regulate the traffic in spirits and other intoxicating liquors within the territories aforesaid, so as, as far as practicable, to prevent the sale of any spirits or other intoxicating liquor to any natives.
13. The Company as such, or its officers as such, shall not in any way interfere with the religion of any class or tribe of the peoples of the territories aforesaid or of any of the inhabitants thereof, except so far as may be necessary in the interests of humanity, and all forms of religious worship or religious ordinances may be exercised within the said territories and no hindrance shall be offered thereto except as aforesaid.
14. In the administration of justice to the said peoples or inhabitants, careful regard shall always be had to the customs