Results 61–80 of 600 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Lord Empey

Northern Ireland Executive: Update - Statement (6 Sep 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, the subtext of the Statement is that the Government are hunkering down for a prolonged period of no government. The Secretary of State is jumping before she is pushed by the courts over the elections, because a judicial review is already pending and I do not think she could have defended herself had action not been taken. Given that it is highly unlikely that there will be any...

Northern Ireland: Legacy of the Troubles - Question for Short Debate (5 Sep 2018)

Lord Empey: On 19 December 2013, two senior DUP representatives, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson and Emma Little-Pengelly, came to persuade my party to support their idea for investigating the legacy of the Troubles. The historical investigations unit was the centrepiece of their plan. They expected that it would give victims a better experience. These proposals became part of the Stormont House agreement and,...

Northern Ireland: Devolved Government - Question (4 Sep 2018)

Lord Empey: Is the Minister aware that a humanitarian crisis is developing in the health service, with 280,000 people waiting for a consultant-led first appointment and 88,000 people waiting for more than one year for a consultant-led first appointment? I repeat my request to the Government on humanitarian grounds to bring the powers of the health service back here temporarily to offset what could...

Northern Ireland Budget (No. 2) Bill - Second Reading (and remaining stages) (18 Jul 2018)

Lord Empey: I am sorry to interrupt the Minister, but he goes back to his analogy in his three-way split: the current position, direct rule or a restoration of devolution. That worries me, because it does not introduce any new thinking. The answer in the short term will have to be somewhere between those different options. I was hoping to hear that there would be a look at options, whatever they might...

Northern Ireland Budget (No. 2) Bill - Second Reading (and remaining stages) (18 Jul 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, one of the primary duties of any elected body, whether it is a local authority, a regional authority or a national parliament, is to deal with budgetary matters, to scrutinise them, to assess them and to determine how budgets are spent. This is the second occasion in a few months when a budget has come before this House which has not been scrutinised or subject to the views of...

Financial Exclusion - Question (4 Jul 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, the Minister will be aware that post offices have taken up a lot of the slack caused by the closure of banks, but post offices close down as well and they do not offer the suite of services that banks can. People who are still dependent on cash are being squeezed even more. While I join the Minister in congratulating the noble Baroness, Lady Tyler, on her work with the ad hoc...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Commons Reasons and Amendments (18 Jun 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, I was not keen on the amendment originally proposed by the noble Lord, Lord Patten of Barnes, and I still think there are issues with the proposal before us. Reference has been made to the joint report issued in December last year. The problem is that that was completely contradictory. It contained almost mutually exclusive objectives. I feel that putting that into the Bill has its...

Northern Ireland: Devolved Institutions - Question (23 May 2018)

Lord Empey: Is my noble friend aware that, in the High Court last Monday, Mrs Justice Keegan decided that a senior civil servant did not have the authority to sign off on the construction of a waste plant? As a consequence, all significant decisions hitherto taken by senior civil servants have now stopped. How can the Minister and the Government honour their commitments to ensure the effective and...

Identity Cards - Question (3 May 2018)

Lord Empey: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what consideration they are giving to the introduction of identity cards for United Kingdom citizens.

Identity Cards - Question (3 May 2018)

Lord Empey: I welcome the noble Baroness to the Front Bench and wish her well. When the Labour Party produced this idea originally, I, like many others in the House, was very sceptical. However, events have conspired to make it absolutely clear that the system we are operating is—in the phrase coined by the noble Lord, Lord Reid—“not fit for purpose”. Anybody who has watched events over the last...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Report (5th Day) (2 May 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, my noble friend Lord Patten, introduced the debate with his customary excellence and good humour. However, while I took the points he made very well, I felt concerned about the direction of travel and the linkage between some of the points we were trying to debate. The amendment has a number of issues that concern me, the most obvious one, picked up by the noble Lord, Lord King,...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Report (5th Day) (2 May 2018)

Lord Empey: If the noble Lord is such an expert on the Belfast agreement, why is he not prepared to listen to somebody who lives there and was negotiating it? I can assure him that I have been used to dealing with fairly tough customers and I will have a say. We are looking here at a problem which has been grossly exaggerated and at some risk, because we should concentrate on solutions. The best way to...

Northern Ireland (Regional Rates and Energy) Bill - Second Reading (and remaining stages) (27 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: Before the noble Lord sits down, I ask him to reflect on the Judge Hart inquiry. If I picked up him correctly, he indicated that this would await the return of an Executive. I point out to him that every solitary MLA I am aware of supports the implementation of that inquiry. Other parties represented here can say no if they disagree. Every party supports it. Some of the material in the report...

Northern Ireland (Regional Rates and Energy) Bill - Second Reading (and remaining stages) (27 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, I wish to speak primarily on the budget Bill and the regional rates and energy Bill. The third Bill on Assembly Members’ pay requires little debate and its provisions are inevitable in the current circumstances. The sad thing is that we are, as usual, punishing the innocent along with the guilty, but the Bill will pass. Dealing with the budget Bill first, apart from the totally...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee (8th Day) (Continued) (19 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, little did I believe when I moved this amendment that I was going to open up the spectre of your bionic Lordships. Nevertheless, it did personalise the issue to a point. My noble friend Lady Finlay pointed out that science and very often SMEs emerge out of spin-offs from universities. That is true, but there are larger international companies involved in this as well, and that...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee (8th Day) (Continued) (19 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: My Lords, before I speak to the amendment in my name, the noble Lord, Lord Tope, tempts me down memory lane. I served on only the first two terms of the Committee of the Regions; he is a veteran with many stripes on his arm and much more experience. I recall that when it began we had a president, Jacques Blanc, who was the president of Languedoc-Roussillon. We invited him to Belfast and he...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee (7th Day) (Continued) (14 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: It is an incompatibility. There is no point in replacing one incompatibility with another. I am simply saying that if you are in the customs union and the single market, you are in the European Union. If you are out of the European Union, you are not in the single market or the customs union. It is an inevitable consequence. We are arguing for two different things. Let me point out the scale...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee (7th Day) (Continued) (14 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: I am grateful to the noble Lord for that. I have to say that the chief constable was using as an example the erection of customs posts and things that used to exist in the 1950s and 1960s, as well as all sorts of other concrete establishments and so on which we are not going to have. In many respects, the United Kingdom Government have committed themselves not to produce that material at the...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee (7th Day) (Continued) (14 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: I understand what the noble Lord is saying perfectly well. To put this into context, my party supported remain in the referendum, on a free vote. We cited two things: Scotland and the border. I have had this discussion with the noble Lord, Lord Cormack. I am not a Europhile at all—I never have been, even though I spent eight years in Brussels on the Committee of the Regions, very minor body...

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee (7th Day) (Continued) (14 Mar 2018)

Lord Empey: I was not responding to that part of the amendment but I am quite happy to give my opinion on it. I think that a number of measures can be achieved. First, the Republic is not in Schengen, and that is helpful. Clearly, there has to be co-operation between the relevant authorities, which there already is. Regarding immigration controls, cars are often stopped by the authorities on both sides....


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