HC Deb 11 June 1891 vol 354 cc169-70

I desire, with the indulgence of the House, to offer a personal explanation with regard to my action on Tuesday night last. The only matter to which I intend to refer is in connection with Lord Fermoy's Estate. Lord Fermoy, in a letter which I submitted to the House, was charged with taking advantage of a clerical omission in the conveyance of his estate. He had not been called upon to sign a certificate that he had discharged all arrears of rent. Now, I have satisfied myself, though Lord Fermoy was not called upon to do so, that, as a matter of fact, he had discharged and released every farthing of arrears due at the time when the agreement was signed, as required by the 55th Rule of the Land Commission. I notice in the statement of Mr. MacCarthy a reference to a rule under which he says he acted which prevents the landlord from getting more than six months' interest pending the signing of the agreement and the completion of the sale. The letter which I read to the House from Mr. MacCarthy to Lord Fermoy's agent, was dated October 27, while the rule of the Land Commission allowing landlords who sold six months' interest pending completion of purchase, is dated November 1, 1888. I leave it to Mr. MacCarthy to say how Lord Fermoy or his agent can be charged with breaking a rule in October which had not been framed at that date, and which only came into operation on November 1 following. As to the case of O'Sullivan mentioned by Mr. MacCarthy, I did not say that Mr. MacCarthy's valuers had made a mistake. I expressly disclaimed that. What I said was that where there was so marked a difference between the valuation of the Fair Rent Commission and the Purchase Commission there was an irresistible case for a Court of Appeal.