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It is a wonderful tenet of our democracy that if people wish to choose an individual to represent them irrespective of their linguistic gymnastics, and are satisfied that that person will do so ably and capably, it should be within their gift to endorse them. However, when it comes to those employed in our public services throughout the UK, I think not only that this should be a requirement, but that it should apply in Northern Ireland as well.
Having made such points, it is fair to recognise what the Minister outlined in his opening speech on this tranche of amendments. He said that there are implications for the devolved Administrations and institutions, and that what has been fairly replicated for the devolved Administration in Scotland should most properly have formed the basis of our amendment 1. I accept that point, so if he considers the amendment defective, I will take that on board. However, the principle is well worth pursuing. He helpfully outlined that the Government intend to look at the issue again in the other place, which I welcome.