Ben Wallace: rose-
Ben Wallace: No, it is not.
Ben Wallace: Is it not the case that this election-unlike your own, in which everybody knew who they were voting for-is being fixed? This election is forcing a number of members to vote blindly on an issue; they do not know the principles or the outcome. Is it not also the case that Liberal Democrat MSPs are being forced to sell out Scottish students and people in schools? They are voting blindly, as...
Ben Wallace: I have to say to Mr Sheridan, from the other side of the chamber, that as a public servant I believe that I should stand for value for money for the people who put me here and who pay my wages. As a soldier, my wage was set by an independent pay review board. If such a board said that, as politicians, our wage should reflect the average, I would be happy to join Mr Sheridan in voting for...
Ben Wallace: I want to do the decent thing and congratulate Karen Whitefield on her maiden speech. I do not necessarily agree with the content of her speech, but we all need to go through the experience. In fact, I got the maiden telling-off. Yesterday, I was up in Aberdeenshire meeting Conservative councillors. I am delighted to represent the people of Dundee, of Banff and Buchan, of West Aberdeenshire...
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive what measures it intends to take to safeguard the long-term future of Stracathro Hospital and to indicate its intended strategy for the retention of rural hospitals across Scotland.
Ben Wallace: Following Miss Whitefield's wonderful speech last week, I wondered whether she would confirm-if she is not too busy with her many constituents in Airdrie and Shotts who she said would be queueing up at her door-that she is a little disappointed that the legislative programme hardly mentions health, unemployment and poverty, which she talked about so much in relation to her constituents....
Ben Wallace: Point of order.
Ben Wallace: I simply want to raise a point of order. I wonder if Mrs Ullrich would get to the point. We are debating the food standards agency, not cooking with mother.
Ben Wallace: I live in Alford, not far from one of the proposed routes, and on many occasions I drive through Aberdeen on what has now become a rat-run down the Netherly route. Road safety is one of the problems that would be best solved by a peripheral route. Last year, there were 56 road deaths in Grampian alone, which is a terrifying amount. The lack of a peripheral route contributes towards those...
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive what measures it will take to ensure that labelling of meat or agricultural produce is more detailed in order to draw the consumer’s attention to additives such as hormones.
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive, in the light of the increasing number of incidents involving harmful internet material on school computers, what measures, further to the use of software guards, it intends to take to ensure that children and teaching staff are protected from inadvertently downloading or viewing such material.
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive what measures it can take to alleviate the high costs many households are being required to incur in order to repair failures in old septic tank soakaways, given that many of these were part-constructed by local authorities, and whether it will implement any of these measures.
Ben Wallace: I would like to make it clear from the outset that I am in favour of public health. [Laughter.] As Margaret Smith will testify, I am always on at her to get sport and prevention into committee work, so that we can introduce measures which we hope will pay off in the future by alleviating the demands on the health service. I reiterate the point made by my colleague Mary Scanlon: individual...
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive what the annual budgeted cost of Scotland House in Brussels is and whether this cost is met from its block grant.
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive what plans it has for the future funding of Tourist Boards.
Ben Wallace: To ask the Scottish Executive how many junior Doctors are presently contracted to work 72 or more hours per week.
Ben Wallace: Will the minister give way?
Ben Wallace: rose —
Ben Wallace: Did Mr Munro draw to the attention of the chancellor the Liberal Democrat policy of having an 8 per cent real-terms increase in the fuel duty escalator, and its plans to further tax bigger engines such as those used in Land Rovers in the far outer reaches of Scotland? Will moves be made to change that policy?