HC Deb 18 May 1908 vol 188 cc1667-8
MR. MULDOON (Wicklow, E.)

I beg to ask the Prime Minister, having regard to the fact that the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland is primarily responsible for the government of Ireland, whether his attention has been directed to numerous cases in which the heads of other Departments of State, the jurisdiction of which extends to that country, have discharged duties there involving questions of the highest importance in reference to policy and administration without consultation with him; and whether, as Prime Minister, he will take any steps to insure that as regards Ireland the action of every Department shall be subject to the control and authority of the Chief Secretary.


While it is true in a sense that the Chief Secretary is primarily responsible for the government of Ireland, there are other Departments of State which exercise jurisdiction over the United Kingdom generally, and it would require elaborate and far-reaching legislation in order to bring the action of these Departments in regard to Ireland under the control of the Chief Secretary. Such Departments are, e.g., the Home Office, Board of Trade, Post Office, Inland Revenue, and primarily the Board of Works, which is under the control of the Treasury; but as to this last-named Department it is to be remembered that the Irish Council Bill of last year brought it under the control of the proposed Irish Council, but the Bill was rejected.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that appointments have recently been made in Ireland of which the Chief Secretary knows as much or as little as the man in the moon?

[No Answer was returned.]