Points of Order

– in the House of Commons at 5:39 pm on 17th December 2007.

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Photo of Bob Spink Bob Spink Conservative, Castle Point 5:39 pm, 17th December 2007

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. Have you had a chance to see the written statement—No. 22 on today's Order Paper—by the Secretary of State for Transport on the Dartford crossing charging scheme's accounts? Given that the Bill that set up the crossing scheme stated that the charges would be entirely removed when the scheme had paid for itself, which has now happened, would it not have been better to have had an oral statement in the House so that hon. Members could have questioned the continuing, improper and hard-to-afford charges that our constituents have to pay?

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Photo of Sylvia Heal Sylvia Heal Deputy Speaker

Whether Ministers decide to make a written or oral statement is not a matter for the occupant of the Chair. I think that the hon. Gentleman will have opportunities to follow up that point, not least, perhaps, during tomorrow's debate on the Christmas Adjournment.

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Photo of Paul Flynn Paul Flynn Labour, Newport West

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. A written statement has been made today on the Government's decision to give justice to the 140,000 pensioners who were robbed of their pensions. Was it not a shame that we did not have an oral statement so that we could congratulate the Government on achieving that very just outcome, which has brought great satisfaction, and a wonderful Christmas present, to 140,000 robbed pensioners?

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Photo of Oliver Heald Oliver Heald Conservative, North East Hertfordshire

Further to that point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. Would it not be better—

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Photo of Sylvia Heal Sylvia Heal Deputy Speaker

Order. Let me make it clear that we are not about to enter into a debate on that written statement.

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Photo of Oliver Heald Oliver Heald Conservative, North East Hertfordshire

I fully appreciate that, Madam Deputy Speaker. However, would it not be right to congratulate the campaigners who have spent many months fighting hard for justice?

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Photo of Sylvia Heal Sylvia Heal Deputy Speaker

I can only repeat what I said earlier: it is entirely up to Ministers to decide whether to make a written or oral statement. No doubt they will be pleased to read the remarks that have been made in the Chamber.

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