With permission, Mr. Speaker, I wish to make a personal statement. On Friday last, I spoke in the debate on Second Reading of the Civil Rights (Disabled Persons) Bill. I was called at 2.16 pm, and from the outset I did not expect to be able to complete my speech by 2.30 pm. On being asked by the hon. Members for Langbaurgh (Dr. Kumar) and for Workington (Mr. Campbell-Savours) whether I was talking out the Bill, I replied:
I am not going to talk it out; I am going to make my views known."—[Official Report, 31 January 1992; Vol. 202, c. 1258.]
I now recognise that the effect of my words was to mislead hon. Members and that Members were entitled to assume that I intended to resume my seat before 2.30 pm. I deeply regret having misled hon. Members in that way. I offer my unreserved apologies to you, Mr. Speaker, and to fellow hon. Members.