THE WAKANUI TROUBLE.
To the Editor. Sir, —With regard to a letter in your paper of the 21st inst., signed “George Earle, Chairman of the Wakanui School Committee, I beg leave to say a few words. I do not hesitate to say that his explanation about the key of the schoolroom is a collection of mis-statements throughout. Why did not Mr. Earle invite me before the Committee in his presence for an explanation, and there accuse me in the manner he has done ? I should have been most happy to give it. But Mr. Earle chooses to give his own explanation of the matter in my absence, and to saddle me with all the blame. It is an action worthy of him, I will tell you the truth of the matter. Mr. Earle admits that he took one key home with him to his own house, and on the Sunday when he came to the school the other key was in the school door. Strange to say, neither of the two keys could be found after his departure, so that on the Monday morning when the children came both keys were missing. I could have got in through the window and opened the school if I had wished, and. most decidedly would have done so under ordinary circumstances, but taking into consideration the part that Mr. Earle was acting, he saying himself that he was going to act on legal points, I thought it was my duty to act on legal points also. Further, at the time appointed for opening the school, I sent to Mr. Kilgour’s place for the key, thinking that possibly it might have been left there, but it was not. Mr. Kilgour I aing a member of the Committee, I asked him, in the presence of Mr. David Wilson, jun., what I should do under the circumstances, and he distinctly said that if he were in my place he would not open the school! He had seen Mr. Earle take away the key on the Sunday, and he added that probably he would send it with Miss Leech. But neither the key nor Miss Leech put in an appearance. I ask, under these circumstances was it my duty to either break into the school or to run after Mr. Earle for the keys ? Mr. Earle says that his sole reason for going to the school on Sunday was to look up papers. I would ask all those who assembled on that occasion about the truth of this statement. Mr, Earle came there with hammer and nails and nailed the window down, and he said to me on the previous Friday that he would be d d if any one of them should get in. I ask how can a man in the face of proved facta turn round and deny it. Mr. Earle says he was simply upholding his rights and privileges. If these wore his rights and privileges, why not uphold them to the last 1 But Mr. Earle sees that what he terms his “rights and privileges” the public look upon as a piece of brow-beating, and will not have it. Now, when he sees the blunders he has made, he is trying, in his usual shuffling way, by lame excuses and falsehoods combined, to take the guilt off his own back, and saddle me with it. It is with reluctance that I expose the man’s actions, but I feel compelled to refute the false accusations brought against me by him, for the sake of self-defence ; and if Mr. Earle is not satisfied, I shall be most happy to meet him in the face of a public meeting, and prove to him the truth of my statements.—l am, &c., The Offending Schoolmaster, S. Patterson Guiney.
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Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 156, 23 September 1880
THE WAKANUI TROUBLE. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 156, 23 September 1880
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