§ MR. MAURICE HEALY (Cork)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, having regard to the fact that the recent sworn inquiry held by the Local Government Board with reference to the election of a Poor Law Guardian for the Innishannon Division of the Bandon Union, it was ascertained that Mr. Jervis Lee, the person returned as elected by the Returning Officer, had not received a majority of lawful votes, and that his opponent, Mr. Lane, had a majority of lawful votes, will he explain why, under these circumstances, the Local Government Board, instead of ordering a new election, have not declared Mr. Lane elected; whether complaint was made at the inquiry that Mr. Haynes, the Returning Officer, had acted in an unfair and partisan manner; whether the facts ascertained at the inquiry showed that he had improperly allowed a number of votes which plainly should not have been allowed, and had made a number of false statements to the parties interested, especially with regard to certain votes improperly allowed to a Mr. Frewin; and whether it is proposed to take any notice of Mr. Haynes's conduct?
MR. J. MORLEY
The Local Government Board inform me that in cases, such as the present, in which they ascertain on inquiry that an incorrect Return has been made by a Returning Officer, they issue an order setting aside the Return and a further order to supply the vacancy, but that they have no power to declare a person elected as Guardian who has not been returned as such by the Returning Officer. It was shown at the inquiry in the present ease that the Re turning Officer did wrongly allow certain votes to be recorded for both candidates, but no evidence was produced to substantiate the charges of partiality, &c, preferred in the question. The Local Government Board, under the circumstances, do not propose to take any further action beyond that already taken.