INSPECTOR BROHAM'S RESIGNATION.
A largely attended public meeting was held in the Theatre Royal last night, in connection "with the resignation of Inspector Broham- The chair was taken by his Worship tho Mayor of Christchurch (Mr Chas. Louisson), and the following gentlemen were amongst those on the platform:—The Rev. Gordon Webster, Messrs J. Connal, A. Ayers, J. Jamieson, T. t>. .. eston, W. Sey, W. Chrystall, W. E. Samuels, A. Appleby, H. B. Kirk, W. J .Cresswell, G. Harris, A. H. Turnbull, A. W. Beaven, C. J. Marshall, and J. Shand.
The Chairman read several apologies, and at the same time explained that the meeting had been called by him in answer to a requisition presented to him by several citizens.
llr R. C. Bishop (Mayor of New Brighton) wrote, that in consequence of the very severe illness of a near relative he was prevented at the last moment from being present at the meeting to express regret at the resignation of Mr Inspector Broflam. it liud been his intention, ii present, that evening, to have expressed his opinion of Mr Brohaiu as a police officer and as a public servant In | the middle sixties he (the writer), as a young man, joined the Canterbury police force and served for several years under llr Broham, and it afforded him pleasure even at tlmfc distant period to beai his testimony in his behalf as being one of the best and most conscientious officers that the police department Had ever had. He was, a everyone knew, honest and straightforward, brave to a fault, and who nevei told a man to do what he was afraid to do himself. His career since then had been a matter 01 public history. Every district that he had served in h~d contributed its quota to the excellence of Mr Broham's character as a police officer. Had it not been that he was prevented from being present at the meeting, lie could have spoken very much more strongly than it was possible to write hurriedly, but he wished to say that in his opinion, if the Government parted with Mr Broham they would lose the services- of one of the moet efficient police officers New Zealand ever posseted. (Applause.) Mx Jas. Forrester the (Mayor of Sydenham), regretted that in consequence of the meeting of the Sydenham Borough Council he Was unable to be present. The object of the meeting had his most hearty support. Mr T. H. Davey (Mayor of St. idbans) entirely sympathised with the object of the meeting, and trusted that Inspector Broham would be retained, in the service. Apologies in the same tone were also received from the Rev. H. C. M. Watson M i eS f S ™- .£ Booth ' J - R - Blunt > Chas. Clark, W. Thomas, G, T. Booth, and J. A. Frostick. Mr J. Connal regretted that the Mayor of JNew Brighton, who was much more qualified to speak of Mr Broham, lmd not been able to be present. From the tenot of Mr Bishop's letter, it was evident how. much more effectually he could have spoken than the speaker. They were not there, however, to speak much, but to express their appreciation of Mr Brdhain during the many years he had been in the pMblic service, (Applause.) He had been acquainted witli I Inspector Broham since 1866, when he had charge of the police in Hbkitika, and he was tihen struck with his thorough up-to-date-ness. He had had an arduous task in obtaining'law and order. It required great vigilance and energy on the part of the poll cc to maintain ordei in those troublous times, and the/more law-abiding portions of the community had the greatest satisfaction in knowing that Inspector Broham wap in command of the police force. They had read in the newspapers of what Inspector Broham had done in Auckland in connection with the arrest of the convict Cyrus Haley. It required a man with determination and pluck to do such a deed. Inspector Broham had always been efficient and active in the discharge of his duties, and those who had come into contact with, him officially on matters of business had always expressed the greatest satisfaction at having te deal with such a man. He moved—"That this meeting expresses its high appreciation! oi the manner in which Inspector Broham has hitiherto carried out the duties of his office, and expresses its continued confidence in him as Inspector of Police." (Applause). Mr W. J. Cresswell seconded the motion. It was,-he said, extremely gratifying to the promoters of the meeting to see so large an attendance, and it was in the fitness of things* that the Chief Magistrate of the city should j preside. Hβ (the speaker) claimed that ihe was absolutely unbiassed in the matter by any consideration. Hβ had not even the , honour of calling Mr Broham p.. personal | friend, and knew nothing of his political or religious views, oi his opinions ,on* any of the social or other questions agitating the j colony at present; but speaking as one who ' had 'had opportunities of seeing him at his \ work, he firmly believed that he had carried j out his onerous duties in a manner which ' reflected the highest credit on himself and to the safety of the community. „ (Applause). Mr T. S. Westen said it afforded him great pleasure to take part in- the meeting, i Although sympathising deeply with Inspeo- j tor Broham in the awkward position in > which he found himself, they would agree with him that they should net impW. any political or social questions into the matter, but simply speak of Mr Broham in the light, of a public officer. (Applause.) They would find themselves nowhere if they went i into such questions as prohibition. It would be better to deal with him ac Inspector Broham. He (the speaker) was practising in Auckland at the time that the criminal Cyrua Haley gave so much trouble, and he perfectly recollected the great praise Inspector Broham had received for his pluoky"eonduct in the matter; He' had known him since, and as a professional man had experienced? how keenly he did his duty. Often when doing his best for a. client he had wished he had not quite euch a determined man to deal with. - (Laughter.) It wla true that they had not read in detail the report 1 of the Commissioners, nor seen the evidence upon which the Commissioners had condemned the Inspector, and did not even know whether the Government had endorsed the recommendations of the Commissioners upon the point. But they knew that the reflections which had been made had not .been made upon any distinct evidence, or any distinct grounds of'complaint. On the contrary, the charges which had been brought had all hopelessly broken down. Unfortunately, he knew this, for he had bad to.try and sustain charges which had been brought against the police, and his client had been caet in costs; (Laughter.) Upon what grounds these charge., had been brought against their inspector it would be difficult to say. It might be that when the Government read this portion of the report they would know that there could be little or no foundation for the report, and Inspector Broham would be allowed to withdraw hi* resignation, and to regain the confidence, if (he had ever forfeited it, of the people among whom be dwelt. Mr A. H. Turnbull, referring to the remarks of the last speaker that they had not seen the evidence upon w-ioh the Commissioners based their report, said they had seen the evidence of Inspector Broham's life, not' only* in Christchurch, but iv Timaru, i Auckland, and on the West Coast, and that was a sufficient denial of the charges laid at his door, (Applause.) They had been told that they were not going to touch upon prohibition or any euoh matters, but in his opinion the trouble had arisen from Inspector Broham's outspokenness before the Commissioners when he had laid his finger on the week spot in the Force. (Applause.) The charges were not true, He had always been struck with the decision winch characterised Inspector Broham'e actions and the discipline whidb-he maintained. Nothing could bring it home to them more forcibly than the fact that Inspector Broham had done hie : duty unobtrusively,.and that no roan could have given greater Satisfaction to the pcopl£ he lived amongst. New Zealand paid ft much lower amount per head than any other colony for the up-keep of its Force; this was satisfactory ac showing that the colony waa law-abiding, but on the other band it must be difficult tor the inspectors with a cheap force. Let the Force be pat on' a eemimiUtary tooting, free from al) political influence, and they would know what manner of man they had to deal with in Mj Broham'. iApplfttue.) He WM onjy »rry fchjkViuijh; an
nnmerited slur had been tiast upon him. (Applause.) _, . , . The motion was put and earned unanimously. - Mr A. Ayers moved—"That this meeting considers that the retirement of Inspector Broham would be a serious loss t> the public, and trusts that the colony will continue to have the benefit of his g™ l6 . 6 *: perience and valuable service." He haa known Mi Broham officially and otherwise, and a truer man he had never had the honour to meet. (Applause.) His very resignation waa characteristic of the man ; it would have been impossible for him to have stayed under such an imputation as I that which had been cast upon him. Mr Weston, in the course of his speech, had 1 expressed tho hope that Mr Broham would be allowed to withdraAV his resignation. He (Mr Ayers) thought it should be that Mr Broham should be requested to withdraw it: (Applause.) During the long time that he had known Mr Broham, that gontleman had discharged his dutie- without respect tc person or political colour, and though political pressure might have been brought to bear, ho was the last man to be influenced by it. To illustrate the manner in which the Inspectoi carried out the discipline of the force, Mi Avers instanced a case which camp under bis notice twenty years ago, the couduct of which aroused in his miud great admiration fo» the character of the mau we had at the head ol tho police force. (Applause.) Ho bad .ince then i seen the Inspector carry out his duties in a similarly effective manner, and aud never lost his admiration foi him as a police officer. (Applause.) Mr H B. Kirk seconded tho motion. He had known thr Inspector fo? considerably over twenty-live years, and during that time he had never known ot ever heard anything concerning him which was not of the highest character. (Applause.) The citizens of the whole of the colony know well how to appreciate a man who had done his bost for them; who had passed through thirty years of service without a stain or blot on his character. Such a man was deserving of the highest commendation, and he hoped all would live many years yet, with Mr Broham the Inspector of Police in some part or other of the colony. (Applause.) Mr A. W. Beaven, in supporting the motion, said that when he compared the law and order which reigned in • our streets as compared with those in other Australian cities, he felt tha* we owed much to Mr Broham. He had not had the pleasure of Mi Broham's acquaintance, but from the knowledge he had of the work he had dove in this city he felt that the Government would be making a great mistake if his services were not retained to us. Hear, hear.)
Mr Geo. Harris also spoke in favour of the motion, and said he had pleasure in saying a word or two which might have some effect in stopping what would be a disgrace to us if Mr Broham, or any other man who had -served liis country so faithfully as he had done, were turned off after thirty-five years' service. (Loud applause.) Mr W. Chrystall said that as regarded the merits of this question it seemed to him that the cruel thing about the slight reference which was made in the report to Mr Broham, .was that no allusion was made to his past services to the country. A man who had faithfully done his duty for thirtyfive years should hawe had his career referred to in some manner. Those who had followed the evidence given in Christchurch were surprised at any reference at all. So far as he and others could judge, there was no ground whatever for the reference which was made. (Hear, hear.) It would be a most deplorable thing if we lost the services of a man of great experience, in ths prime of life, without anything against his. character. They had to remember that his position was a difficult one to fulfil, and that instead of his being a man of small energy he rather erred in the other direction, which made th* reference in the report very unkind. (Applause.) In conclusion, he wished to endorse the remarks which had been made, that in the future the political element might be entirely removed from the police force. (Loud applause.) He did not blame this Government more than any other, but thought the meeting should express its view that such influence should b. r .moved.
The Rev. Gordon Webstei' said ha considered that Mr Broham represented and embodied the very highest traditions of his profession. (Applause.) 'He Isnew him to be a man of great observation and elevation of mind and character in every way. He had set a fine standard.of excellence before him, with a' strong sense of duty, and assuredly men of his stamp and calibre and qualification were not so common here or anywhere else that we could afford to lose their services in this most unkindly way. (Applause.) The duties of an Inspector Avere not easy, and Mr Broham had lately passed through what-he might call an ordeal in a manner which could not have been excelled, if even equalled, by any other Inspector. He earnestly trusted thatth* result of the meeting would be that Mr Broham would receive such assurance from the E roper quarter, as would enable him iw onowably withdraw his resignation, and remain at the post where he had the .entir< confidence and cordial-esteem of all right minded citizens. (Very loud applause.} The motion was. carried uhanixpously, On the motion of. Messrs g_ J; Marshall and W. E. Samuels, it wae'resoived- that copies of resolutions passed by this meeting be sent by his Worship the' Mayor to the Hon- the.Minister, of Defence'and $Jh> Commissioner of Police.
The usual compliment to the Ch&iraan terminated the meeting.
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INSPECTOR BROHAM'S RESIGNATION., Press, Volume LV, Issue 10146, 20 September 1898
INSPECTOR BROHAM'S RESIGNATION. Press, Volume LV, Issue 10146, 20 September 1898
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