HC Deb 28 February 1889 vol 333 cc588-9
MR. MAC NEILL (Donegal, S.)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, whether Mr. O'Neil Segrave, R.M., who was in command of the forces of the Crown at Mitchelstown in September, 1887, on the occasion of a collision with the people, in which three lives were lost, is the same Mr. O'Neil Segrave of whom the following notice appears in the Government Gazette of the Cape of Good Hope, published by authority on Friday, September 4th, 1885:— Head Quarters, Colonial Forces, King "William's Town, 24th August, 1885, Colonial Forces Order, No. 281. His Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive Council, has been pleased to approve of the following alterations, &c., in the Colonial Forces:— No. 2 Cape Infantry Regiment. Lieutenant O'Neil Segrave's services are dispensed with from 31st July, 1885. Herbert Watson Major, gentleman, to be Lieutenant, from 1st August, 1885, vice Segrave, whose services have been dispensed with. By Order, P. Kenion Ffolliott, Lt. Colonel, Military Secretary, Colonial Services. And, what inquiries, if any, did the Government make into the antecedents of Mr. O'Neil Segrave previously to his appointment to the post of Resident Magistrate in October, 1886?


I have already explained that the Government are making full inquiries into all the circumstances, and I hope the hon. Member will agree with me it would be wise to await the result of such inquiries.

MR. SEXTON (Belfast, W.)

May I ask how it happens that ten weeks have been consumed in making these inquiries? Has the right hon. Gentleman any objection to give the House an assurance that the inquiry will be closed before the salary of this person is voted by the House?

MR. CONYBEARE (Cornwall, Camborne)

Is it not a matter of notoriety that this man was turned out of the Cape Army for embezzlement?


I am making every inquiry into the matter, and have done so since the information laid before the House led me to believe there was something to be investigated, which is not always the case. This Gentleman at once went on leave, and has remained on leave ever since. I apprehend that is the only course which it is proper to pursue. When I have made full investigation, it then remains for the Government to determine what course to adopt.


The right hon. Gentleman has not answered my Question. Has he any objection to give the House an assurance that the inquiry will be closed before we are asked to vote the salary for the Office?


I have every expectation that it will; but I cannot say definitely. I cannot conceive that it will last so long.


I will repeat the Question on Monday, and if necessary, move, the adjournment of the House.