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Point of Order
Brian Monteith (Conservative)
On a point of order, Presiding Officer. You will know that, yesterday, members of the Conservative group asked for an emergency question on vaccination and that that question was not taken. I am grateful for the announcement that the First Minister has made today, but by making his announcement in the form that he did, during question time, there was no opportunity for the wider membership of this chamber to ask supplementary questions. Would you consider that matter in relation to the delivery of key statements in future?
Sir David Steel (None)
I considered the matter yesterday when Alex Fergusson raised it. The problem is that the Parliament decided to change the system for First Minister's question time: I have to decide the topics for questions on Mondays. I deliberately chose a question on foot-and-mouth disease to enable the Parliament to get up-to-date information, which is precisely what we got. I accept that that did not allow members as long a run at the issue as they would have had if there had been a statement, but that is a matter for the Scottish Executive, not for me.
I do not think that I am giving anything away when I say that I understand that there will be a statement before we rise for the Easter recess. Other members will have a chance to ask questions at that point. I hope that I am not exceeding my authority in saying that.