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Parliamentary Questions

Volume 447: debated on Monday 12 June 2006

To ask the Leader of the House what steps he is taking to improve the speed and accuracy of answers to written parliamentary questions. (76115)

All Ministers fully understand the requirement for timeliness and accuracy in providing answers to written questions. I have discussed at Cabinet with my ministerial colleagues the importance we attach to proper accountability to Parliament. My Office helps to ensure that the standards are adhered to and Mr. Speaker knows my own commitment to this.

At the same time, the House must accept that there has been an ever-increasing number of written questions being tabled. Not all perhaps are tabled with the full involvement of the Member in whose name they are tabled and some perhaps may be inspired by outside pressure to be seen to be tabling a high number. This inevitably places the system under pressure.