HC Deb 20 November 1919 vol 121 cc1103-4
6. Captain HACKING

asked the Under-secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what compensation has been or will be made to Sir William Wilkinson, late His Majesty's Consul-General at Hankow, China, who is officially declared by the Foreign Office to have rendered valuable service to His Majesty's Government for having, at the request of the Secretary of State to facilitate thereby a scheme of reorganisation, submitted, at great loss and inconvenience, to forego his right under the Orders in Council to remain ten years longer in the service?


It is incorrect to say that any Consular officer has a right under Orders in Council to remain in the service till the age of seventy. The Secretary of State can, if he deems it desirable in the general interests of the service, call upon a Consular officer to retire at any stage of his career. This does not, however, apply to the case of Sir W. Wilkinson who, at the time of his retirement, had completed the requisite number of years' service qualify- ing him for full pension. He was accordingly awarded a pension of £583 6s. 8d. a year, together with a lump sum of £2,135, under the provisions of the Superannuation Act of 1909. Sir William Wilkinson is only one of several Consular officers who, by reason of the scheme of reorganisation now in progress, have been called upon to retire. The Secretary of State has no power to grant special compensation in addition to the award of full pension to which the length of service entitles a Consular officer on retirement.


What is the Order in Council by which you could force him to retire below the age of seventy?


I will send the hon. and gallant Gentleman a copy of the Order in Council.

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