HC Deb 27 June 1906 vol 159 cc944-5
MR. JOHN ROCHE (Galway, E.)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if he is aware that in the mandamus proceedings pending between the auditor of the Local Government Board and the Corporation of Dublin, the Local Government Board for Ireland are represented before the court by the same counsel as invariably appeared for that body during the past ten years, with, as junior, the son of the Attorney General for Ireland in the last † See (4) Debates, clvi., 701; clvii., 1278. Government; if he will say whether there was a case where, a Tory Government being in power, the Irish Local Government Board drew even one of their counsel from the opposite side; and if he can explain why, in a case of such importance as this to local bodies in Ireland, the Government passed over their own Solicitor-General.


In the proceedings referred to in the Question, the auditor acts quite independently of the Local Government Board, and is represented by solicitors and counsel of his own selection. The Board are not party to those proceedings, and are represented only by counsel familiar with the special work of the Board with watching briefs. There was, therefore, no occasion for asking a barrister occupying the official position of the Solicitor-General to appear in the present case. It has, I am informed, frequently happened that the Local Government Board have been represented during the past ten years by counsel holding Liberal opinions. I understand that their regular junior standing counsel holds those opinions. When cases of high importance arise, the Board secure the presence, in addition to their usual standing counsel, of the law officers, or one of them.