CEISTEANNA—QUESTIONS. ORAL ANSWERS. - SALE OF TOBACCO IN GOVERNMENT OFFICES.

asked the Minister for Finance if he is aware that unlicensed persons, employees of the Government, are constantly offering for sale cigarettes and tobaccos in Government offices, and if in accordance with regulations made by the Revenue Commissioners, notices of such sales are displayed on the office doors; if he will take steps to protect persons unwilling to purchase from the attentions of these hawkers of dutiable goods.

I have to refer the Deputy to the reply given on this matter on the 2nd December, 1925. As no licence is necessary in cases where tobaccos and cigarettes are distributed by co-operative clubs consisting of persons employed in some Government Departments, the necessity for the display of notices does not arise. I have no information that any kind of pressure has been exercised in connection with these clubs.

Does the Minister approve of this action of Government employees going into competition with citizens who are tax-paying?

I neither approve nor disapprove. I do not regard it as a matter which I need consider at all so long as they do what is legal and proper.