HC Deb 15 November 1906 vol 165 cc120-1

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury whether the Lords of the Treasury have recently received a petition from the clerical staff in the Department of the Controller of Stamps protesting against the promotion over their heads, to a principal clerkship, of a minor staff officer in the department of the secretaries, with considerably less service than the clerk in the Controller's Department, who was specially recommended by the Controller as the fittest man for the post; whether he is aware that the Controller of Stamps was for some years an assistant secretary, and had, therefore, full knowledge of the characters and official qualifications of each of the two gentlemen concerned; whether seeing that such a translation as that complained of is directly opposed to the principle which has hitherto, with one special exception, always obtained in filling the principal clerkships and assistant controllerships by promotion from competent officers within the ranks of the Controller's Department, he will cause full inquiry to be made in regard to this transaction, and satisfy himself, as well on the merits as from all points of view, that the translation of the officer in question is likely to be an influence for good in the Department of the Controller of Stamps, and really beneficial to the public service; and whether, pending such inquiry, he will instruct the Commissioners of Inland Revenue to defer the translation of the gentleman in question.


The Treasury have received the petition and have given due i consideration to its contents. The second division clerks are a body common to a large number of Government Departments, and liable to transfer from one department to another, as the public service may require. The Treasury are unable to admit that the members of that body who have been assigned for service in the Inland Revenue Department acquire an exclusive right of promotion to all the superior posts in the particular branch of that department in which they may happen to be placed. It is the duty of the Board of Inland Revenue to fill vacancies by selection of the men who are best qualified, and the Treasury have no reason to doubt the propriety of the selection they have made for the vacancy now in question.


Why was the Controller's recommendation disregarded?


There has been no recommendation.


I will put another Question.