MR. C. J. ENGLEDEW (Kildare, N.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland if he will consider the desirability of largely reducing the number of officers in the Royal Irish Constabulary and place either head constables or senior sergeants in charge of the less important districts, now in charge of district inspectors, and thus give the men of the force a better chance of promotion in a reasonable time, and also effect a further considerable saving to the revenue?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY TO THE LORD LIEUTENANT OF IRELAND (Mr. GERALD BALFOUR,) Leeds, Central
I am not prepared to say that the number of officers at present in the Royal Irish Constabulary is in excess of that required for the efficient performance of the duties demanded of them, and it would not, in my opinion, be for the public interest, or for the good of the force, that any change should be made in the existing system of supervision and control. As under a recent Order half, instead of, as formerly, one-fourth, of the promotions to the rank of district inspector are given to head 159 constables, any reduction in the number of officers would adversely affect the interests of the deserving men in the ranks for whose benefit the change was made.