Assembly Business

– in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 3:30 pm on 15th November 2016.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Naomi Long Naomi Long Alliance 3:30 pm, 15th November 2016

On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. In the course of Question Time, the Minister, I think, inadvertently misled the Chamber with respect to our position on 50:50 recruitment for policing. It is not the case that Alliance supported 50:50 recruitment at any time for policing, and, indeed, it was our Minister who withdrew that provision. I would like you, Mr Deputy Speaker, to review Hansard and perhaps give the Minister the opportunity to set the record straight.

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Deputy Speaker

While it is not a point of order, it is a point of information. Should the Minister wish to adversely challenge that or otherwise, that is up to him.

Photo of Paul Givan Paul Givan DUP

I understand that the Alliance Party can be very precious about the finer details at times, but my understanding is that the Alliance Party supported the Patten report.

Photo of Naomi Long Naomi Long Alliance

Further to that point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker.

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Deputy Speaker

Is this a point of order?

Photo of Naomi Long Naomi Long Alliance

Further to that point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker, there is a serious issue here with respect to the fact that these are not matters of political opinion but matters of fact. The party did not support 50:50 recruitment. For the Minister to continue to insist that that is the case is now a deliberate attempt to mislead people in the Chamber.

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Deputy Speaker

While it is not a point of order, it is a point of accuracy, and you have now twice had the opportunity to put your point of accuracy clearly on the record.

Photo of Stephen Farry Stephen Farry Alliance

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. This is a different point of order about Standing Order 20(8). While, obviously, respecting the option for the Speaker to act with his discretion in such matters, could I seek clarity for the House on the relevance of supplementary questions? Question 5 to the Minister for Communities referred specifically to Ulster GAA and Casement Park. A supplementary question about Windsor Park was permitted from Mr Stalford but one was not permitted from my colleague Mr Lyttle about The Oval. Furthermore, question 6 was specifically about the Ulster Fleadh —

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Deputy Speaker

Could the Member get to his point?

Photo of Stephen Farry Stephen Farry Alliance

— in Bangor, and a supplementary was taken on marching bands. Could I ask the Deputy Speaker to reflect on the consistency of the approach that was adopted today and maybe come back to the House to provide further guidance to all Members so that we can better frame our questions in light of the guidance from the Chair?

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Deputy Speaker

Those matters will be reflected on as to their relevance as points of order, and the Member will receive a response from the Speaker.

Photo of Lord Maurice Morrow Lord Maurice Morrow DUP

Further to that point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker, is it in order for a Member to rise on a point of information?

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Deputy Speaker

For clarification, it was not on a point of information. It was described as a "point of order", and I have to listen to it to determine if, in fact, it is a point of order. That is how the Member described it.

On that point, we have no further issues, so can Members please take their ease while the Chair changes?

(Mr Speaker in the Chair)