THE STRIKE OF TRAINEES.
Statement By Brigadier General Wilson. BRISBANE, May 3.
Commenting on the report of the refusal of duty by trainees in camp at Ululah (Maryborough), on the grounds of faulty food and excessive route marching, Brigadier-General C. Wilson, commanding the Eleventh In-
fantry Brigade, stated to-day he was present at Maryborough on Saturday, Sunday and Monday last, and attend- ed dally at the camp. He neither saw nor heard evidence of insubor- dination until Monday afternoon. On that morning the Wide Bay Regiment was ordered to carry out a tactical scheme along Pialba Road, necessi- tating a march of 4½ miles. The scheme was conducted without any untoward event until, in accordance with the scheme, the regiment was held up at Saltwater Creek shortly af- ter mid-day. Lunch was then taken, and afterwards he received informa- tion that there had been trouble with the battalion apart from the advance guard, and that they had at first re- fused to move along the road to the cookers to draw rations. After some delay, the officers induced the men to march to the cookers, and after the men had had their dinner, they form- ed up in companies and marched back to town under the second in command. The bulk of the officers remained to carry out further tactical exercises. He saw the whole regi- ment move off in good order, and the
statement in the press that they retir- ed in a disorderly manner was the first he had heard of it. He, him- self, remained at camp till 8.15 at night and heard no suggestion there had been any more trouble than de- lay in moving up to the cookers. The statement of the indiscriminate firing of blank cartridges was mislead- ing. Cartridges had been issued to the men, and it was not an unusual pratice for trainees to shoot off un- used cartridges to make the barrel hot for the purpose of easier cleaning. Brig.-General Wilson also denied there were any more men than usual walking about the streets of Mary- borough at night. Regarding the sug- gestion of bad food, he declared he saw meals served out on two oc- casions and both times the quality was excellent. MARYBOROUGH, May 8. Yesterday's trouble with 4,000 trainees ended last night. The men went on parade as usual this morning, and no action was taken by the Com- manding Officer. The camp conclud- ed to-night.