§ MR. ERNEST BECKETT (York, N.R., Whitby)
had the following Question on the Paper:—To ask the Secretary of State for War, Whether he is aware that the new guns recently sent to Aden arrived without sights and pumps, and are, consequently, useless; and, whether he will take steps to rectify this omission, in consequence of which Aden is practically defenceless, as soon as possible?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE (Mr. E. STANHOPE) (Lincolnshire, Horncastle)
I hope the House will allow me to answer this Question, as it is of great importance. Two 6-inch breech-loading guns were received at Aden without sights and other stores. Steps were taken to supply this deficiency, and the sights and pumps will be sent out forthwith. But I am strongly of opinion that the mistake ought not to have occurred. I hope, however, that no delay has been caused, as the guns and their mountings will take some time to set up.
§ MR. LYELL (Orkney and Shetland)
asked, if the right hon. Gentleman could identify any person responsible for this Omission?