HC Deb 18 July 1923 vol 166 c2288
46. Sir H. CRAIK

asked the Prime Minister whether there is statutory authority for the handing over of Irish records, the property of this nation, to the Government of the Free State by Order in Council?

The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for the COLONIES (Mr. Ormsby-Gore)

I have been asked to reply to this question. The statutory authority for the Order in Council, to which the right hon. Member refers, will be found in Section 1 of the Irish Free State (Agreement) Act, 1922.


What is the authority for violating this fundamental rule of law, that no property of the nation can be parted with except by the authority of Parliament?


It was done by the express authority of Parliament, by the Statute of 31st March, 1922, which empowered the Government of the day to make an Order in Council, which was laid on the Table of the House for 21 days and expressly transferred these records to the Provisional Government.

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