The amount of compensation paid in respect of pre-truce awards in personal injury cases is approximately £2,240,000. As regards property cases, the responsibility for payment, in the first place, rests with the Irish Government and the amounts paid from Imperial funds are in the nature of recoverable advances. These payments, which include payments made in a limited number of post-truce cases, amount approximately to £137,000.
A reply to this question is given in the Public Notice No. 20, published in the "Dublin Gazette" of November 21st. As it is a long one I will, with the hon. Member's permission, circulate a copy of the Notice in the OFFICIAL KEPORT, and as it provides for a new procedure in claiming compensation, I am also circulating it to the Press in order that it may have the maximum publicity possible.
Public Notice No. 20.Compensation in respect of damage to or destruction of property inflicted since the 11th July, 1921.
- (1) By a Resolution passed on 22nd September, 1922, Dail Eireann adopted the principle that a proportion of the compensation recoverable in respect of damage to or destruction of property inflicted since 11th July, 1921, and up to a date to be fixed should, under approved conditions, be borne as a national liability. It is proposed, in due course, to proceed with the legislation proper for giving effect to this decision, but in the meantime, in order that the determination of awards may not be unduly delayed, it has been decided, pursuant to a further Resolution of Dail Eireann, dated 1st November, 1922, to proceed forthwith with the Parliamentary steps which are necessary or proper for such determination.
- (2) It is accordingly hereby notified to all concerned that all claims for compensation as aforesaid, except such claims as may already have been discharged should be submitted with the least possible delay. Every claim should be made out in triplicate, one copy being sent to the Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Upper Merrion Street, Dublin, one copy to the secretary of the county council or town clerk of the county borough council in whose area the damage or destruction occurred, and one copy to the Clerk of the Crown and Peace of the
2582 same area. Claims should be made upon the special forms which have been prescribed for this purpose and which may be obtained free of charge on application to the secretary of the county council or town clerk of the county borough council concerned.
- (3) Persons who may already have obtained decrees in respect of damage to or destruction of property inflicted since the 11th July, 1821, should, notwithstanding that fact, make renewed application in accordance with the Public Notice.
- (4) For the purpose of making a claim under this Notice any loss of property not due to accident may be deemed to be damage to or destruction of property, but it is not on that account to be assumed that compensation will necessarily be payable in respect of such loss.
I do not think that any scheme for irrigating land in that portion of the Valley of the Niger which falls within the Protectorate of Nigeria is required, in view of the ample rainfall of most of the parts of Nigeria through which the river runs. But the Government of Nigeria is alive to the possibilities of works for water storage and irrigation in the drier districts in the north of Nigeria; and has recently asked that an irrigation engineer should be engaged to report on such schemes in Sokoto Province. The area in Nigeria in which cotton can be grown without irrigation and within easy reach of the railway is, however, so large that I doubt if any irrigation scheme would be justified if it were carried out solely in order to increase the production of cotton.