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Points of Order

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Justice – in the House of Commons at 12:44 pm on 25th April 2017.

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Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Speaker of the House of Commons, Speaker of the House of Commons, Chair, Commons Reference Group on Representation and Inclusion Committee, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission 12:44 pm, 25th April 2017

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for giving me notice of his point of order. I do appreciate his concern. The content of Ministers’ answers is, of course, not a matter for the Chair. That is a matter exclusively for the Minister giving the response. However, the hon. Gentleman references my repeated exhortation to Ministers to provide timely and substantive responses, an exhortation in which I am regularly joined by the Leader of the House. Many Ministers attach a premium to adhering to that principle and expectation. I agree that it is unsatisfactory if the Government are unable to give a substantive answer to a named day question tabled well before Prorogation. No doubt the concern articulated by the hon. Gentleman has been heard on the Treasury Bench. Insofar as he further seeks my advice, it is encapsulated in one sentence: the hon. Gentleman should seek to speak to the Leader of the House, sooner rather than later.