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Meat And Livestock Officers (Appointments)

Volume 361: debated on Thursday 30 May 1940

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asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food on whose recommendation a stockbroker and a wine merchant, respectively, were appointed area meat and livestock officers; by what method these appointments were made; and whether the present salary of £1,000 a year in each case was the commencing salary?

The officers mentioned were among those appointed on a designate basis by the Food (Defence Plans) Department before the war after the most careful consideration of a large number of nominations obtained from various sources. One was originally a deputy area meat and livestock officer and was appointed to his present post recently on the resignation through ill-health of an area meat and livestock officer. No salary was paid in either case for services rendered prior to the war. On the outbreak of war the salary was fixed at £950 per annum, which was in creased to £1,000 per annum on 15th January last. Experience has shown that the selections made have been thoroughly justified.

Will my hon. Friend tell me on whose recommendation these appointments were made, and by whom were these two wholly unqualified gentlemen put into these very highly paid posts; and will he call for a general review of the whole situation in the light of these extraordinary circumstances?

I do not accept my hon. Friend's statement that these gentlemen are unqualified, and I do not think I can accede to his request. I have made careful examination into these cases and we are quite satisfied that these gentlemen have discharged their duties very well.

Owing to the unsatisfactory nature of the reply, I beg to give notice that I will raise this Question on the Adjournment at the first convenient opportunity.