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Amendment 1

Part of Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill - Committee – in the House of Lords at 3:15 pm on 15th July 2019.

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Photo of Baroness Harris of Richmond Baroness Harris of Richmond Liberal Democrat 3:15 pm, 15th July 2019

My Lords, I regret to tell the Committee that the Liberal Democrats cannot support these amendments. Northern Ireland has already been without an Assembly, a devolved Executive and effective decision-making for far too long. We are only reluctantly supporting 21 October, as I have said, and our hope is very much that the Bill will not be needed at all.

As we have heard, there have already been nine weeks of constructive talks. Now is not the time to take that pressure off Northern Ireland’s political parties—in fact, we must keep the pressure on. We want devolved government restored to Northern Ireland as quickly as possible, and these amendments are not the right way to go about things.