Northern Ireland (Elections) (Amendment) (No. 2) Order 2015

Northern Ireland Office written question – answered on 2nd December 2015.

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Photo of Lord Kennedy of Southwark Lord Kennedy of Southwark Shadow Spokesperson (Housing), Opposition Whip (Lords), Shadow Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs)

To ask Her Majesty’s Government when the decision was taken to lay the Northern Ireland (Elections) (Amendment) (No. 2) Order 2015 on 2 November, and which Ministers were involved in taking the decision.

Photo of Lord Kennedy of Southwark Lord Kennedy of Southwark Shadow Spokesperson (Housing), Opposition Whip (Lords), Shadow Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs)

To ask Her Majesty’s Government on what date (1) the Chief Electoral Officer, and (2) the Electoral Commission, was consulted on the Northern Ireland (Elections) (Amendment) (No. 2) Order 2015.

Photo of Lord Kennedy of Southwark Lord Kennedy of Southwark Shadow Spokesperson (Housing), Opposition Whip (Lords), Shadow Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs)

To ask Her Majesty’s Government on what date the Department of Justice in Northern Ireland was advised of the impact on the criminal offence of breach of official duty as a result of the changes relating to the correction of procedural error made by the Northern Ireland (Elections) (Amendment) (No. 2) Order 2015.

Photo of Lord Kennedy of Southwark Lord Kennedy of Southwark Shadow Spokesperson (Housing), Opposition Whip (Lords), Shadow Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs)

To ask Her Majesty’s Government on what date the Minister of Justice in Northern Ireland was advised of the impact on the criminal offence of breach of official duty as a result of the changes relating to the correction of procedural error made by the Northern Ireland (Elections) (Amendment) (No. 2) Order 2015.

Photo of Lord Dunlop Lord Dunlop The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland

Northern Ireland Office Ministers took the decision to lay the Northern Ireland (Elections) (Amendment) (No.2) Order 2015 on 30 October 2015, following discussions with Ministerial colleagues at the Cabinet Office. Northern Ireland Office officials began work on the Order in May 2015, although work was delayed by the department’s focus on the Northern Ireland Talks process. The Minister of Justice in Northern Ireland was advised of the impact of the proposed changes relating to procedural error by letter on 31 July 2015. The Chief Electoral Officer expressed support for the proposed content of the Order in meetings in June 2015. The Electoral Commission was consulted on the Order on 1 October 2015. As the Explanatory Memorandum to the Order sets out, there are significant differences in the systems operating in Northern Ireland and Great Britain and a one size fits all approach is not justified.

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