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Emergency Procedure

Volume 83: debated on Monday 22 July 1985

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4.15 pm

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. It relates to matters of emergency and urgency. I do not want to ask a question that impugns the reason why a private notice question request may have been turned down. The fact that I made one this morning on a matter of considerable importance relating to a tribunal decision on the Welsh language is only one example of what may happen. When a matter of importance like this requires a decision to be taken by you, in conjunction with the Department that will have to answer the question, or otherwise, and you decide, in your wisdom, not to allow a private notice question to be asked—

Order. The hon. Gentleman is now raising that matter which I have already said is out of order. Perhaps he would phrase his point of order in a different way.

I ask you, Mr. Speaker, whether it is possible, in these circumstances, for a reply on a private notice question refusal to be given before 12 midday so that the hon. Member who has raised the question cart come to the House under Standing Order No. 10 and ask the House to consider, through you, whether the matter is of sufficient importance and urgency to merit an emergency debate. That is a reasonable point to put. It would facilitate the discussion of emergency matters, without hon. Members having to resort to the belt and braces procedure of putting in both a Standing Order No. 10 request and a private notice question simultaneously, thereby making work for you.

Order. The hon. Gentleman knows that it has long been the practice of the House that to put in a private notice question backed up by a Standing Order No. 10 request is unacceptable. The hon. Gentleman, and every other hon. Member, must make his decision as to which of the two courses of action he prefers to adopt. I have nothing further to say, apart from this: there will be other opportunities this week when the matter can be aired by him.