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On a point of order, Presiding Officer. I wish to raise a point of order that concerns chapter 12 of standing orders, in so far as it relates to the operation of committees. In doing so, in no sense do I make any comment on the selection of amendment S4M-15414.1, and nor do I speak on behalf of the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee, which has not yet considered the substance of Mary Fee’s proposed amendment to standing orders.
I seek from you, Presiding Officer, an assurance that in the event of the Parliament’s passing amendment S4M-15414.1, which I suspect it shall, the committee will retain the freedom to consider the purpose of Mary Fee’s proposed amendment while not being bound to take the formulation of that amendment. The initial advice appears to be that the formulation of the amendment would have no effect in changing the standing order powers to the Parliament. Therefore, I believe that the committee would wish to be able to consider as wide as possible a range of standing order amendments or other amendments that it might bring forward to give effect to the purpose of Mary Fee’s amendment.
It would be helpful to Parliament and the committee to have your assurance, Presiding Officer, that amendment S4M-15414.1, which calls on political parties to take action, does not bind the committee in its detailed consideration of the issue.