New Clause 3 - Appointment of First Ministers

Northern Ireland (Ministers, Elections and Petitions of Concern) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:45 am on 6th July 2021.

Alert me about debates like this

‘(1) The Northern Ireland Act 1998 is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection 16A (appointment of Ministers following Assembly election), leave out subsections (4) to (7) and subsection (9), and insert after subsection (3)—

“(3ZA) Each candidate for the office of First Minister or deputy First Minister, or jointly First Ministers, must stand for election jointly with a candidate for the other office.

(3ZB) Two candidates standing jointly shall not be elected to the two offices without one or more of the following measures of representational support—

(a) the support of a majority of members, a majority of designated Nationalists and a majority of Unionists; or

(b) the support of 60 per cent of members, 40 per cent of designated Nationalists and 40 per cent of designated Unionists; or

(c) the support of two thirds of members.

(3ZC) The First Minister and the deputy First Minister—

(a) shall not take up office until each of them has affirmed the terms of the pledge of office; and

(b) subject to the provisions of this Part, shall hold office until the conclusion of the next election for First Ministers.”.

(3) In subsection (3)(a) the reference to “subsections (4) to (7)” shall be replaced by a reference to “subsections (3ZA) to (3ZC)”.’—

This new clause would restore the Good Friday Agreement provision for joint election by the Assembly of the joint First Ministers.

Brought up, and read the First time.

Question put, That the clause be read a Second time.

Division number 1 Northern Ireland (Ministers, Elections and Petitions of Concern) Bill — New Clause 3 - Appointment of First Ministers

Aye: 2 MPs

No: 10 MPs

Ayes: A-Z by last name

Nos: A-Z by last name

The Committee divided: Ayes 2, Noes 10.

Question accordingly negatived.

Bill, as amended, to be reported.

Committee rose.