HC Deb 20 December 1830 vol 1 cc1369-70

Mr. G. Bankes, on the question being again put, said, he wished to take the opportunity to ask a question of the right hon. Gentleman opposite (Sir J. Graham), on the subject of the removal from office of the Under Secretary of State for Ireland. He understood that Mr. Gregory, the Gentleman who filled that office under several successive Administrations, had been dismissed by the present Government. Now, as it was a recognized principle that Undersecretaries, although removable by a new Government, were generally retained for public convenience, and because they were not supposed to be influenced by any political partialities, the dismissal of Mr. Gregory, a man possessed of great experience in his office,; able to serve the public, and willing to continue his services, had excited much: surprise both in England and Ireland. Under such circumstances, and when the; public convenience would have been consulted by retaining Mr. Gregory's services, it was desirable to know, if it was true that he had been removed, on what ground the country had been subjected to the expense of the retiring allowance which that gentleman would be entitled to demand.

Sir James Graham

said, he should endeavour to give a short answer to the somewhat lengthy question of the hon. Member for Corfe Castle. It was quite true that Mr. Gregory had been removed from the office he held under the late Government, be- cause it was the opinion of the present Ministers that the removal was necessary for the public service, and they had, therefore, taken upon themselves the full responsibility which attached to it. He agreed with the hon. Member, that it was not usual to remove gentlemen placed in the situation of Under Secretary, and he also agreed with him, that one of the reasons for not removing" them was because they were not considered open to political partialities; but the existence of political partiality in the present case was precisely the reason why the removal had taken place.

Mr. Ruthven

approved highly of the conduct of the Ministers on this occasion, and declared, it was absolutely necessary for the good government of Ireland that the office of the Under Secretary of State, which had long been a nest of partiality and party spirit, should be thoroughly cleared.