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Points of Order

Volume 521: debated on Wednesday 12 January 2011

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. The House has been waiting for the conclusions of the counter-terrorism review since the end of the summer. It now seems that we will not have a statement this week, and that we may not have one next week either. It appears, however, that the full details of the review were leaked to a BBC television station last night. Is that not a shambolic and contemptuous way in which to treat the House in respect of an issue of such vital national importance when, as the Prime Minister said today, consensus is the right way forward? Have you any information, Mr. Speaker, on when we are likely to have a statement, and should that not happen tomorrow or as soon as possible?

The short answer to the right hon. Gentleman’s question is that I have no knowledge of when a statement is to be made, and I do not want to become involved in hypothetical questions. I am not aware of the disclosure to which the right hon. Gentleman has referred, but as the whole House—including Ministers—is aware, when decisions have been made they must first be announced to the House.

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. You will be aware that there is a huge amount of speculation in the press today following yesterday’s court hearing involving the hon. Member for Barnsley Central (Mr Illsley) and whether he could now be expelled from the House. May I ask you to clarify whether the matter remains sub judice—

Order. I have got the gist of what the right hon. Gentleman is seeking to raise. I can advise him and the House that the matter in question is sub judice until the point at which the judicial process as a whole has been completed. That is established, and there are precedents for it. I hope that what I have said to the right hon. Gentleman and to the House is helpful.

Order. There is no further point to be made. The right hon. Gentleman has raised the matter and I make no complaint about that, but I feel that I have given a clear indication to the House of what the position is.