§ 55. Captain Ryder
asked the Minister of Defence by virtue of what authority Article 17A of King's Regulations and Admiralty Instructions makes approval of an application by an officer or rating requesting retirement or discharge, with a view to his candidature for Parliament, dependent upon the exigencies of the Service; and to what extent this applies to the other Services.
§ Mr. Shinwell
This Regulation, and the corresponding regulations of the other Services, are made in pursuance of paragraph 5 of the Servants of the Crown (Parliamentary Candidature) Order, 1950. All decisions on requests to resign from the Service are taken in the exercise of the prerogative. In practice, a request to be released for the purpose of Parliamentary candidature would not be refused, save in exceptional circumstances where the interests of the Services would be seriously prejudiced.
§ Captain Ryder
How does the right hon. Gentleman account for the discrepancy between this Regulation and the Order in Council to which he referred on 7th February? Who decides the important issue as to whether the exigencies of the Service or of this honourable House should take priority?
§ Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
Can the right hon. Gentleman clear up the point about at what level in the Service Departments this decision, with its obvious political implications, will be taken?
§ Mr. Shinwell
It may not come to the Minister, but it would be considered at the highest military level.
Will the right hon. Gentleman try to make it as easy as possible this time, bearing in mind what he did to me last time?