HC Deb 13 November 1917 vol 99 cc210-1
49. Colonel FABER

asked the Prime Minister whether he will communicate to the House the reasons in consequence of which the late Director-General of the Mechanical Warfare Supply Department has been relieved of his duties; whether he is aware of the circumstances under which this officer was originally appointed to this office; whether this appointment was first considered at a meeting of the Committee of Imperial Defence at which this officer attended in his capacity as secretary to the Tank Experimental Committee; whether three of the four members of the Tank Experimental Committee were unaware of the presence of this officer at the meeting of the Committee of Imperial Defence referred to; whether this officer at this meeting stated that he was an automobile engineer; and what engineering qualifications has this officer to his credit?

Sir WORTHINGTON EVANS (Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Munitions)

I have been asked to answer this question. My right hon. Friend the Minister of Munitions desires me to say that it is not usual to state the reasons which lead to change being made from time to time in important administrative posts, and he is confident that my hon. Friend will not press for an exception in this case. He desires me, however, to draw my hon. Friend's attention to the fact that the late Director-General of the Mechanical Warfare Supply Department is still employed in an active and important capacity, where his special knowledge and exceptional experience in regard to tanks will receive full scope. The latter portions of the question refer to matters which lie wholly in the past, and no records exist to which reference could be made.

Colonel FABER

If this gentleman has no engineering experience, he would not, of course, be employed as an engineer?


I am afraid I cannot add anything to the Minister's answer.