The official side of the National Whitley Council for the Civil Service is nominated by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, and I propose accordingly to invite three Members of Parliament to serve on the Council. It has already been explained to the House that Members of Parliament so appointed will form part of the side which is responsible to Ministers and exercises such authority and responsibility as may be delegated to it by the Chancellor of the Exchequer; and under these conditions nomination would naturally be confined to supporters of the Government of the time.
If, as was mentioned during the Debate on this subject, there should be direct representation from the House, surely it is only fair and reasonable that the representation from the House itself ought to be drawn from the various parties, and not particularly from those immediately under the control of the Chancellor of the Exchequer's Department?
If the Whitley Council is to be representative, as was the intention of the House, of the civil servants' side and those nominated from the Department by the right hon. Gentleman, surely it can only be carried out by representation directly responsible to the House, and not acting under the direction or authority of any particular Minister?
I am afraid the situation is quite the contrary to what the hon. Member describes. The Chancellor of the Exchequer is the person who is responsible for the official side of the Whitley Council, and accordingly the responsibility lies upon him and not with the House. It is for him to select those members whom he delegates for the purpose.