§ MR. MURPHY (Dublin, St. Patrick's)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether the plans proposed by the Government Engineer for the Barrow Drainage Works have now been condemned as unsuitable, and if, in consequence, the Bill to enable the project to be carried out, for which Parliamentary Notices were published last November, will have to be abandoned; what were the superior qualifications of the engineer and his principal assistants, who have been employed on the Barrow and Shannon Drainage Schemes, which made their appointments necessary or desirable, to the exclusion of engineers resident in Ireland, who had for many years made a special study of the improvement of those Rivers; and, what do the Government now propose with regard to the carrying out of those important National works?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR) (Manchester, E.)
The hon. Member appears to be under a 1482 misapprehension as to the plan that has been prepared for dealing with the matter. It will be brought before the House as soon as the condition of Public Business admits of it. As regards the officers employed, the chief engineer is an Irishman by descent, and was selected for the special experience acquired by him when engaged on extensive hydraulic works in South Africa. All his engineering assistants are Irishmen, who were selected with a due regard to their qualifications.