§ MR. HARRIS (Galway, E.)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether it is true that the clerk, who is also returning officer of the Mountbellew Union (Mr. Bartholomew Riely), refused to issue voting papers to the electors in the Mountbellew division of said union, and by so doing prevented Mr. Thomas Higgins from proceeding with his canvass for the Poor Law guardianship of that division; and, whether the reason assigned by Mr. Riely was that Mr. Higgins was under age, and is it a fact that Mr. Higgins denied this allegation, and stated before the Mountbellew Board of Guardians on the 10th instant, he was in a position to prove that he was over the statutory age, twenty-one years; and, if so, will the Government inquire into the truth of these opposite statements, and give redress to Mr. Higgins if they find he has been unjustly disqualified from seeking the position of Poor Law guardian?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY (Mr. JOHN MORLEY) (Newcastle-on-Tyne)
It is correct that objection was made to the nomination and election of Mr. Higgins, on the ground, amongst others, that he was not of full age. As it appeared from the official register in the custody of the clerk, that Mr. Higgins was not yet 21 years of age, the clerk allowed the objection. The Local Government Board have no information of what Mr. Higgins may have stated; but they are of opinion that the clerk was right in accepting the evidence of the official record.