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Orders of the Day — Housing (Scotland) Bill

– in the House of Commons at 5:20 pm on 29th March 1988.

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As amended (in the Standing Committee), considered.

Photo of Mr Norman Hogg Mr Norman Hogg , Cumbernauld and Kilsyth 5:27 pm, 29th March 1988

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. This afternoon, we had a statement from the Secretary of State for Scotland. We are becoming used to these statements because the Government in Scotland are struggling I do not understand why a massive number of civil servants from the Scottish Office seem to be necessary to assist with such statements. Is there some way in which the House can regulate who attends in an official capacity? This is an important point because some Opposition Members have no confidence in the Scottish Civil Service since—

Photo of Miss Betty Boothroyd Miss Betty Boothroyd Deputy Speaker (Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means)

Order. The hon. Member knows that no breach of order has been committed and that this is not a point of order for the Chair.

Photo of Mr Norman Hogg Mr Norman Hogg , Cumbernauld and Kilsyth

Further to the point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker.

Photo of Mr Norman Hogg Mr Norman Hogg , Cumbernauld and Kilsyth

Yes, Madam Deputy Speaker. Surely, Members of the House regulate, through their Standing Orders, who attends the House. Is it appropriate for a Member to object to the presence of so many civil servants, brought here at great cost to the Scottish people, for little purpose?

Photo of Miss Betty Boothroyd Miss Betty Boothroyd Deputy Speaker (Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means)

That is not a point of order. There is no Standing Order that governs the attendance of such staff.

Photo of Mr Norman Hogg Mr Norman Hogg , Cumbernauld and Kilsyth

Further to the point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker

Photo of Miss Betty Boothroyd Miss Betty Boothroyd Deputy Speaker (Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means)

Order. The hon. Member is delaying very important business concerned with housing in Scotland. Does he seek to make a fresh point of order —one with which I call deal?

Photo of Mr Norman Hogg Mr Norman Hogg , Cumbernauld and Kilsyth

The point that I seek to make is that there must be some means of raising this matter. Let me leave it at that and I shall find some means of raising the matter on another occasion.

Photo of Miss Betty Boothroyd Miss Betty Boothroyd Deputy Speaker (Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means)

The hon. Member is a frequent attender in the Chamber. He could seek to raise the matter through an early-day motion or the Procedure Committee. I am sure that it is not beyond his wit to deal with this matter by other means.