§ MR. HEALY
asked the Secretary to the Treasury, Is it true there are six acting examining officers at the outports of Her Majesty's Customs who have been doing the duties of examining officers efficiently for a period ranging from ten to fourteen years, and whose characters are unimpeachable; how is it that the assurances given by him, as appeared in The Freeman's Journal of 28th February, viz. that the case of these officers would be considered when the first vacancies arose, and would he explain the reason why those men have not yet been promoted to the rank of examining officer; if the aforesaid officers are not competent, on what grounds are they continued in the performance of those duties for so lengthened a period; has it not been a recognized rule of the Board that one-half of these promotions is filled by competition, the other half by selection; and, if such be the case, would not the grievances of these officers have been removed long since?
§ MR. COURTNEY
Sir, there are six officers in the position described. No promise has been given to promote them to the first vacancies open for selection; but their cases have been and will, as I said before, be considered as vacancies arise. Since February 28 there have been four promotions, and the explanation of the fact that no one of the six has been selected is that while they are competent for their duties, there were better men in the Service.