Parliamentary Bureau Motion

– in the Scottish Parliament at 4:52 pm on 12th June 2003.

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Photo of George Reid George Reid None 4:52 pm, 12th June 2003

The next item of business is consideration of a Parliamentary Bureau motion. I ask Patricia Ferguson to speak to and move motion S2M-127, on the deputy convener of the Subordinate Legislation Committee.

Photo of Patricia Ferguson Patricia Ferguson Labour 5:02 pm, 12th June 2003

Parliament will perhaps recall that last week I moved a motion, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, to allow committees to be formed and to indicate to Parliament the political affiliation of the convener and deputy convener of each of the committees.

It is worth putting on record that, in order to accommodate the involvement in the committees of the Scottish Green Party, the Scottish Socialist Party and the independent members of our Parliament, every party in the chamber made sacrifices towards a package that was aimed at maximising the inclusiveness of our committee structure. My own party relinquished the deputy convenership of the Environment and Rural Development Committee to the Greens and the deputy convenership of the Subordinate Legislation Committee to the SSP. As I am sure that members will recognise, those are both important committees.

I am sorry that I have to come back to Parliament today to move a further Parliamentary Bureau motion to allow the deputy convenership of the Subordinate Legislation Committee to revert back to the Labour party, mainly because of the unwillingness of the SSP to fill the post. Given the protestations that we heard last week from the SSP about its involvement in committees, it should be a matter of great regret that a committee that in its short life has had some illustrious members—Margo MacDonald, Bristow Muldoon and Kenny MacAskill, to name but three—should not be regarded as important enough to merit the time, commitment and participation of members of the SSP.

I move,

That the Parliament agrees that the Deputy Convener of the Subordinate Legislation Committee be appointed from the Labour Party.

Photo of George Reid George Reid None

Carolyn Leckie has asked to speak. That is at my discretion and I allow her to speak briefly.

Photo of Carolyn Leckie Carolyn Leckie SSP 5:04 pm, 12th June 2003

I think that it is for the Scottish Socialist Party to determine how best to represent the people who voted for us and how best to achieve the vision of the independent socialist Scotland for which we are campaigning.

I support Patricia Ferguson's motion. I am happy for the Labour party to have the deputy convenership of the Subordinate Legislation Committee and I am sure that the member who will perform that role will also be happy.

Photo of Patricia Ferguson Patricia Ferguson Labour 5:05 pm, 12th June 2003

I wonder whether Ms Leckie's happiness—as she put it—to give the deputy convenership of the Subordinate Legislation Committee to a member of the Labour party has anything to do with Ms Kane's comment in court yesterday that she hoped that her community service would be on a Thursday afternoon so that she would not have to come to the chamber?

Photo of George Reid George Reid None

The question on the motion will be put at decision time.