HC Deb 31 July 1923 vol 167 cc1273-4

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that there is no precedent in which legislation by a Dominion has overridden and abolished statutory rights of British subjects which have accrued and become vested under legislation of the Imperial Parliament prior to the acquisition of Dominion status by such Dominion; and whether, under these circumstances, he will make representations to the Irish Free State requesting them to reconsider their action in abolishing the statutory vested right of British subjects to compensation for malicious injuries under awards made before the ratification of the Treaty by the Imperial Parliament?

Captain DOUGLAS HACKING (for Mr. Ormsby-Gore)

I am not aware of any exact precedent for the provision to which my hon. and learned Friend refers, nor am I aware of any precedent for the circumstances giving rise to it. In view of the fact that, by Article 7 of the Heads of Working Arrangements, His Majesty's Government agreed in principle to this provision on the ground that the rights in question were in fact unenforceable and were to be and have been replaced by rights which are enforceable, my Noble Friend the Secretary of State is not prepared to make any representations such as are suggested in the last part of the question.


Can the hon. and gallant Gentleman give any explanation-why they should be abolished without legislation in this House?


Can he say why?


I must have notice of both those questions.


Can the hon. and gallant Gentleman give any reason why these statutory rights were abolished without legislation?