§ 33. Major Tufton Beamish
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that an officer on the active list, who was at the time a prospective Parliamentary candidate, received a posting order shortly before the General Election, which was not in accordance with the spirit or the letter of paragraph 1 of Army Council Instruction of 9th November, 1944; if he will give details of the circumstances in which this posting order was made and of any other similar postings; in how many cases the officers in question appealed for the decisions to be reconsidered; by whom such appeals were considered; and with what results.
§ Mr. Strachey
I am aware of only one case in which an officer on the active list, who was a prospective Parliamentary candidate, received a posting order shortly before the General Election. The order was made to ensure that there could be no suggestion of a conflict between official and political interests as a result of his holding a position of authority over certain of his prospective constituents. I should add that there was 1751 no implication that the officer was acting improperly or otherwise than in conformity with regulations. The officer appealed against the order and the appeal was rejected after consideration by the Army Council. Since, however, between 17th December, the date on which he vacated his previous appointment, and the General Election, the officer was required to perform only some two days military duty, there is no question but that he was given every reasonable facility in accordance with the pamphlet issued with the Army Council Instruction referred to.
§ Major Beamish
Can the Secretary of State for War say why this posting was not put in writing? Further, by whom was the final decision taken to turn down the appeal of this officer?
§ Mr. Strachey
I have already answered the second part of the Question; it was considered by the Army Council. I am being asked a separate question on the form in which the posting was made.