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THE NEW RAILWAY BOARD.

■» (From oor Exchanges.) Thoy (the Government) have succeeded In appointing a gentleman who is most certainly not competent to €11 the office of Chief Commissioner. Mr M'Kerrow may be a very good surveyor, but he Is bb ignorant of the business of managing railways ss the man ln the street. A more preposterously absurd appointment could ecareely have been made. It Is a repetition of the blunder made by the Hall Government when they appointed Mr Maxwell, bat on a. larger scale, and we will add that it has all the appearance of a job.— * l Southland Timee." A telegram frcm Auckland, dated I{J h Instant, .ays : — The "Herald" Is not enamoured of the newlyappo'nted Board of Railway" Commissioners, and considers that a muoh better mouse should have been produoed after bo long and p»lnfnl a parturition by the mountain. It says :— "Mr Maxwell, after defying Mlulstera and Parliament, wdl not be baulked by Mr M'Kerrow and Mr Hannay. The appointment of tbe commission has stereotyped the old system with all Its abuses and defects, and the new railway management will be worae than the last. If Mr Maxwell soourged the settlers and publio before with rods, he may be expeoted to flog them now with scorpions." The '• Otago Dally Times " contains the following :— The appointment of railway commissioners has, no, doubt s'ruck different members of Parliament In different ways. The way It struck Mr Vincent Pyke was peculiar. That gentleman despatched a telegram to the Premier on Saturday whioh, If not m precisely the following words, was to this effect ; — " A ridiculous hoe* has been palmed off upon the Ppnedin papers to the effect tbat the Government have appointed Mr J. M'Kerrow chief Commissioner of railways, and Messrs Maxwell and Hannay assistant commissioners. Please authorise rfte to give the statement an unqualified denial." The necessary authorisation has not yet been received by Mr Pyke, The " Wellington Evening Post," while paying a high tribute to Mr M'Kerrow's servioes as Chief Surveyor, says regarding his appointment to tbe Chief Commisslooershlp of Railways : — " We do not suppose that the possibility of Mr M'Kerrow'a appointment to the offioa had ever suggested Itself to any one, except probably Mr Maxwell, outside the Cabinet Itself. It would have been strange If It had done so, for no one would have been jostlfled In aisupjlog tbat Ministers would venture to so ; entirely Igtfbr© the will of Parliament as to' constitute a Railway Board whioh does not fulfil any one of the main conditions which induced tbe Legislature to agree to hand over tbe control of the colonial railways to an independent non-political Board. The most important of those c ; oqsitioj_g *^as, fhas the Jfoard should be presided oyer by a tho-oarta-ty qualified expert m the art of mlway management, and a man entirely free from all local influences and associations, "To such a Chief Cotamigaioner Parliament *^as willi^? to, conoede the fullest; powers. What the Government has do^o, however, js to ptyce those powers m the hands of an officer who is fctterty igtorant of the principles pf railway managerftentj theoretfoally apd nraotical]y, who is intimately associated wfth several local undertaking-, and who, during hie Imo'o than thirty yeare' residence m thoolony, must have acquired the assooia tions and become subject to the influences i irom wnicn it was deemed specially • important the Chief Commissioners should I be entirely free. W e assert, with every • cb-fldeiice, that Parlis}riet_t trpuld never » havß consented to transfer its powers over t the railways to a Board, oould it h&ve " foreseen that Mr M'Kerrow would be the J Chief Commissioner, and we are quite ' Certain that when Parliament again meets > it will resent most strongly the breach of t faith which has been committed m making 1 thßt»PP6,Btinent l "

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18890115.2.23

Bibliographic details

THE NEW RAILWAY BOARD., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2037, 15 January 1889

Word Count
633

THE NEW RAILWAY BOARD. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2037, 15 January 1889

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