HC Deb 17 March 1890 vol 342 cc981-2
MR. FLYNN (Cork, N.)

I beg to ask the Attorney General for Ireland whether, in view of the repeated and public complaints of the Rev. T. O'Keefe, P.P., Meelin, County Cork, the constabulary authorities will issue instructions to the local police to discontinue the system of constant following of and watching Reverend Father Kennedy, C.C., and whether they will order that policemen shall not follow the reverend gentleman when engaged in visiting the sick and the dying, and other similar duties of a sacred character?


The Constabulary Authorities report that it is necessary to watch Father Kennedy, of Meelin, County Cork, as he is actively engaged in endeavouring to revive the local branch of the National League, which has been, suppressed in the district as an unlawful association. The police, of course, will not follow him on any occasion where they have reason to believe that he is engaged in the discharge of duties of a, sacred character.


I beg to ask the Attorney General for Ireland whether complaints have reached him that at Meelin, County Cork, Sergeant Hyde called on Father O'Keefe, P.P., to tell him from Colonel Turner that additional police will be quartered on the people of the district in the event of any outrage occurring in the parish; if so, was the policeman authorised by Colonel Turner to make the communication; and whether he is aware that Father Kennedy, senior curate to Father O'Keefe, has been twice taken to prison from this district for offences under the Criminal Law and Procedure (Ireland) Act; and, under the circumstances, can he give an explanation why a communication of this kind was made to the parish priest?


The Constabulary Authorities report that it is the case that the sergeant met the parish priest in the village and made the communication to him indicated in the first paragraph. He was authorised to do so by the Divisional Commissioner. Father Kennedy has been convicted under the Crimes Act.