§ MR. PAUL (Northampton)
To ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer whether the present Controller and Auditor-General was appointed by the late Government with an understanding that he should retire at a particular age, and, if so, at what age; whether they had any right to exact such terms, or any others; and whether Mr. Kempe is made by statute independent of the Executive, so that he should be responsible to this House alone.
(Answered by Mr. Asquith.) I am informed that an understanding was made with Mr. Kempe when he was appointed that he is to retire at the age of sixty-five. There is no provision made by statute for the compulsory retirement of this officer at any particular age, and I conjecture that the object of the arrangement was that Mr. Kempe should agree to give up his post at the usual age of retirement in the Civil Service. There can be no question that the holder of the office is by statute independent of the executive and solely responsible to the House of Commons.