SECTION 10.

No member of the Gárda Síochána below the rank of Chief Superintendent shall be at liberty to resign his membership of the Gárda Síochána or to withdraw himself from his duties as such member unless authorised so to do in writing by the Chief Superintendent of the area in which he may for the time being be stationed, or unless he shall give to such Chief Superintendent one month's notice of his intention so to resign or withdraw, and if any such member of the Gárda Síochána shall so resign or withdraw himself without such previous permission or notice he shall be liable on summary conviction to a penalty not exceeding twenty pounds, or to imprisonment with or without hard labour for a period not exceeding three months.

Members of the Guard are not at liberty to resign without permission or without giving due notice, but a Chief Superintendent is evidently at liberty to resign if he likes.?

Yes. The basis of that was simply that if a man in a position of responsibility, such as a Chief Superintendent, makes up his mind to go out probably the sooner he goes the better, having regard to the extent of his duties and responsibilities. On the other hand, you might be put into a position of grave inconvenience by a number of Guards or a number of Sergeants leaving without notice.

Well, the notice is not very long.

I agree that they ought to give notice.

In the Dáil a similar question was asked, and I think the basis of discrimination is simply that, as from that rank up, when a man has made up his mind to leave the Force you really gain nothing by saying that he has got to stay on for a certain time. The sooner he goes the better. I am sure a Commissioner, or any man at the head of a Force, would agree on that point, that a man with a high rank and a big range of duties and responsibilities will only give satisfaction when he has the intention of staying on. Once he comes definitely to a decision to leave he is better out of it, and his responsibilities are better entrusted to somebody else, even if it was the case of a neighbouring Superintendent taking them over until better arrangements were made.

The same as a Cabinet Minister; when he wants to go let him go.

Sections 10 and 11 put and agreed to.