§ Mr. HUGH LAW
asked whether at the election of petty sessions clerk for the district of Falcarragh, county Donegal, held on 25th instant, it was urged upon the magistrates on behalf of one of the candidates that the person elected to the office should have a knowledge of the Irish language, as a great number of the people of the district who had business at the petty sessions court were Irish speakers and did not know English; whether the person elected to the office had no knowledge of the Irish language and did tot, speak it; and whether, in future elections of petty sessions clerks in Irish-speaking districts, instructions would be issued to the magistrates that they should give preference to candidates with a knowledge of Irish?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
It was urged on the magistrates that the person elected to the office of petty sessions clerk at Falcarragh should have a knowledge of the Irish language, but they did not consider this essential. The person elected cannot speak Irish. I understand that there are very few people in the district who cannot speak English. The election of a petty sessions clerk is in the hands of the magistrates alone, and I have no power to issue the instructions suggested.