§ MR. SCHWANN
To ask the Post-master-General whether he is aware that certain officers of the engineering department sat for an examination and passed for the positions of second-class engineers in April, 1904; whether these officers have received promotion, seeing that other persons examined on November 8th, 1456 for the same positions, have received appointments; whether he is aware that the men examined in April, 1904, have been in the Department for many years and have rendered good service to the Department, whilst the men promoted as a result of the November examination are juniors who have had to be taught their duties since their entry into the engineering department; and, if so, will he redress any well-founded grievance which he may find to exist.
(Answered by Lord Stanley.) The officers to whom the hon. Member refers underwent a Departmental examination to test their eligibility for promotion within the service. This examination, unlike the examination of the Civil Service Commission, is conducted without reference to the number of vacancies in existence. After the officers have passed, they are promoted from time to time as suitable vacancies occur. The persons who are described by the hon. Member as "juniors" were outside the service, and passed a competitive examination before the Civil Service Commissioners for specific vacancies which had been reserved for open competition. I am not aware of any grievance created by these circumstances. Any of the officers in question who are duly qualified will be promoted as vacancies among the appointments reserved for persons in the service become available.