§ MR. FIELD (Dublin, St. Patrick)
To ask the Secretary to the Treasury whether, having regard to the fact that in the recent reorganisation of the Exchequer and Audit Department the staff of Second Division clerks (comprising at the time about one-half of the whole Department, with twenty subsequent additions as retained Second Division clerks reached eight years service), whose approved service extended between eight and twenty-eight years, were, under special Treasury sanction, promoted to be examiners with Higher Division certificates in the newly-reconstituted Department, and that their attention was particularly directed by their Departmental heads to the circumstance that this reorganisation was designed to increase the efficiency of the Department by removing the hitherto artificial barriers to promotion, he will explain whether it was with the authority of the Comptroller and Auditor-General that recently the Assistant Comptroller and Auditor, and certain of his subordinate chiefs, assured certain probationers who entered under the new scheme of examination that they would be preferred for advancement before their senior and experienced ex-Second Division colleagues; and, if so, seeing the effect of such administration on the public service, will he say why seniority and equality of efficiency are ignored in making promotions in this Department.
(Answered by Mr. Runciman.) The hon. Member has been misinformed. No such assurance was ever given.