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Myalgic Encephalomyelitis Bill

Volume 131: debated on Friday 15 April 1988

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Order for Second Reading read.

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. First, I must express my deep feeling of outrage that the Government Whip, the hon. Member for Watford (Mr. Garel-Jones)—

Order. I am in the Chair. I remind Ministers that I am the one to call order. Will the hon. Member for Clydesdale (Mr. Hood) sit down?

My point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker, is this. As the promoter of the Bill, can I seek your advice? The Government Whip acts on behalf of the Government. Will he tell the House whether he is acting on behalf of the Minister in opposing the Bill? If so, let me tell him that he has betrayed the hundreds—

Order. Again, I perfectly follow hon. Members' frustrations when they have worked hard on a Bill of this nature, but this is not the moment to debate it.

Second Reading deferred till Friday next.

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. Will you confirm that it is in order for any hon. Member to object to any of these Bills being passed without debate and, indeed, without disclosing either their identities or their reasons?

Will you also confirm that there is no reason in the Standing Orders of the House why any hon. Member should not volunteer at that stage or indeed later, not only his identity, but—particularly if he is a Minister, by letter to the hon. Member in charge of the Bill—the reasons for his objection to the Bill's being taken without debate?

I could not have put it better myself. Therefore, I have no intention of repeating exactly what the hon. Gentleman said.