May I raise a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I seek your guidance on a particular matter, and since this is the second week of August at a time when we are usually not sitting in this House you may well find me out of order.
I feel that there has been some discourtesy to back benchers following a statement made last week in the House by my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House to the effect that we would have a statement this week relating to a decision on Maplin Sands. I feel that today, with so many Members present, would be an ideal time to have that statement, but we have not been permitted to hear it. I wonder whether you regard it as a discourtesy that we have not had this statement today.
This is not a matter of order for me. It is precisely the kind of matter which can be raised on one of the Motions tabled for discussion today and with which we shall be dealing in due course.
Perhaps I may be allowed to say, further to any question of discourtesy, that I was told that I was talking nonsense when I suggested that a certain decision was to be announced. But as soon as I walked out of the Chamber I was told that the decision had been taken and that this was said in a letter:
The Board therefore announce that they have decided to proceed with the oil-gas station at Boddam, near Peterhead.
Surely it is only courteous for Ministers to make these decisions in the House so that they shall not waste hon. Members' time.
The right hon. Gentleman knows that that is not a matter of order. Fortunately for the Chair the contents of Answers and Questions and matters of courtesy are not matters for the Chair.