HC Deb 14 February 1887 vol 310 cc1399-400
MR. MARUM (Kilkenny, N.)

asked the Postmaster General, Whether it is the fact that Mr. Patrick Ward, of Kilkenny, was one of those persons who were, during the pressure that occurred at the date of the transfer of the telegraphs to the State, provisionally placed on duty; that, in 1876, an Act was passed legalizing the position of such of these officers as could be certified as having given satisfaction, and as having conducted themselves properly; that Patrick Ward passed the usual examination in the School of Telegraphy, Dublin, as the Instructor can now testify; that he now holds a certificate in writing, signed by the Controller of the General Post Office, Dublin, testifying that there was, nor is, nothing against Mr. Ward's integrity or his general character; that, nevertheless, his services were then dispensed with by a former Postmaster General on the alleged ground that he could not be certified under the Act of 1876; that the officer who held at that time the position of Superintendent of the Telegraph Department, with control of the issue of such certificates, has, since the dismissal of Patrick Ward, been himself dismissed from the Service, for malfeasance in his said office; and, whether, under all the circumstances, he will now take into favourable consideration the case of Patrick Ward, with a view to his re-instatement in the Telegraph Service?

THE POSTMASTER GENERAL (Mr. RAIKES) (Cambridge University)

The statements made by (he hon. Member respecting Mr. Patrick Ward are generally correct. Mr. Ward's duties were, however, performed in so unsatisfactory a manner that the Postmaster General could not give the necessary certificate required by the Post Office and War Office Act of 1876; and as Mr. Ward's employment could not, therefore, be legalized under that Act, there was no alternative but to dispense with his services. The re-instatement of Mr. Ward would not be of advantage to the Service; and I regret, therefore, that I am unable to hold out any hope that that course could be adopted. The officer who held the position of Superintendent of the Telegraph Department at the time Mr. Ward was discharged has not been dismissed from the Service, but has been pensioned.