HC Deb 27 February 1891 vol 350 cc1849-50

I beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury if he is in a position to state when the Committee of Inquiry into the Financial Relations between Ireland and Great Britain will commence its investigations?


I am anxious to push this matter forward with Irish Members. I do not know whether they are yet prepared to resume the discussion, and I did not like to ask them whether they were. If I am to take this question as an indication that there now exists a desire to go forward with this Committee, I will immediately take measures to have it reappointed, with such changes in the constitution of the Committee as circumstances may demand. I would propose, as March was by far the busiest month with me, and I should be unable to give continued attendance, that the Committee should be appointed, and that one meeting should be held, and that there should be placed before the Committee the information we have collected. I would then propose to postpone for a month the meeting of the Committee, when we should be able to give further information—in fact, the results of the second year, 1890–91, to compare with the year 1889–90. If that course commends itself to hon. Members I shall be glad to follow it.


I thank the right hon. Gentleman, and concur in the general view of the circumstances ho has expressed. May I suggest to him that it would make the proceedings of the Committee more useful if he would allow an interval between the circulation of the Return and the first meeting of the Committee?


Certainly, it will be convenient that some time should elapse, but, of course, I cannot have the Papers circulated until I know who are to be the members of the Committee. Though to a great extent the composition of the Committee may be the same, it does not follow that the members will be the same.

SIR J. M'KENNA (Monaghan, S.)

May I ask the right hon. Gentleman if he would be prepared to add some additional Irish Members to the Committee?


The composition of the Committee was very carefully considered at the time it was nominated and agreed to on both sides, and I do not think I could assent to making such a change.

MR. T. W. RUSSELL (Tyrone, S.)

Will the right hon. Gentleman take steps to have the names submitted to the House without delay?


So far as it lies in my hands, yes.