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Ministerial Statements

Volume 12: debated on Thursday 12 November 1981

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On a point of order Mr. Speaker. I have no interest to declare but many hon. Members wish to take part in the business that is to follow. It is, I think, within your prerogative, Mr. Speaker, to suggest to Ministers, including even the Prime Minister, that if they intend to make a statement that will deprive Back Benchers of time in subsequent debates, they should ensure that the statement is not given to the press as happened this morning and in today's midday newspapers. Is it not taking liberties with the House when Ministers come along, as they now do regularly, to make a statement that has already appeared in the press? Would not the best course be for you, Mr. Speaker, to say before questions that you will not allow the statement to be made because you have read it already in the press that day?