MR. BAYLEY POTTER
said, he would beg to ask the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether he has any objection to give a Return of the names of the Persons for whom the Clerks in the Foreign Office now act as agents, or have so acted at any time during the last five years; of the emoluments which such Clerks have individually received for such agency during the last five years, and the amount received by them from each Person; and whether there is any truth in the statement which has appeared in the public press that the agencies in the Foreign Office are to be abolished?
Sir, I have no objection to give a Return of the names of those persons for whom Clerks in the Foreign Office now act, or for the last five years have acted, as agents. With regard to the emoluments, I am prepared to give the aggregate annual amount received by each agent, as that may become a matter of public interest should any question of compensation arise. I do not think it would be fair to give the amount contributed by each individual, as that is purely a matter of a voluntary and private character, no Diplomatic or Consular officer being required to appoint an agent. With reference to the last part of the Question of the hon. Member, I have to say that the question of the abolition of these agencies is under consideration.