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Business Of The House

Volume 462: debated on Friday 18 March 1949

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Motion made, and Question proposed,

"That the Proceedings on any Motion for the Adjournment of the House moved by a Minister of the Crown be exempted, at this day's Sitting, from the provisions of Standing Order No. 1 (Sittings of the House) for half an hour after Four o'clock."—[Mr. H. Morrison.]

On a point of Order. May I ask for your guidance, Mr. Speaker? As this Motion is presumably Government business, may I take it that it will be taken after the conclusion of the business on Private Members' Bills?

The business on Private Members' Bills ends at four o'clock, and this comes on afterwards. Suppose there is a Division, and that all the Private Members' Bills are not finished, they will be called in due course at 4.30 when the Government business is over. There is no interference at all with Private Members' time.

The Motion itself which stands in the name of the Prime Minister, is presumably Government business, so that the Motion cannot therefore be put before the House until Private Members' business has been concluded.

Of course, if Private Members' business has all been concluded it will then come on, but otherwise it waits until Private Members' business is finished at four o'clock and not after. I think it is quite clear.

Further to that point of Order. I am not quite clear if I have in mind what the hon. Gentleman means, but I think he is endeavouring to make the point that by an Order of the House the whole of today's sitting is devoted to Private Members' business, so that he finds himself in some difficulty in understanding how the Motion standing in the name of the Prime Minister is being put before the House in that time which is available for Private Members.

I cannot understand that. It is not taking anything out of Private Members' time. As I pointed out yesterday, Private Members' time finishes at four o'clock, and this does not start until four o'clock.

I rather understood that the Resolution the House passed some little time ago was that on a certain number of Fridays, of which this is one, Private Members' business should have precedence over Government business. The Motion just moved is obviously Government business and ought to wait until Private Members' business is concluded.

Question put, and agreed to.