Memorandum from the Principal Clerk, Table
1. This paper discusses some of the aspects
of Parliamentary Questions highlighted in the Committee's press
notice announcing its inquiry and in the questionnaire to Members
and also takes account of the proposals related to Questions discussed
in the Leader of the House's recent memorandum to the Modernisation
Any changes to the sitting hours of the House, such as are proposed
in that memorandum, would have implications for the arrangements
for tabling questions; I will be happy to let the Committee have
more detailed comments on these when decisions are taken about
Changes in the System since 1990-91
2. There have been some substantial changes
since the Committee's last major inquiries into this subject.
The rota setting out which ministers answer on which days (which
is the responsibility of the Government) has been simplified to
reflect what had become the reality, that questions tabled to
ministers in any Department other than that which was the first
department due to answer would not be reached, and the Prime Minister
has changed his slot for oral questions from twice a week for
fifteen minutes to once a week for half an hour.
3. A major change followed devolution. On 25
October 1999 the House agreed the following resolution:
``That, subject always to the discretion of the
Chair, and in addition to the established rules of order on the
form and content of questions, questions may not be tabled on
matters for which responsibility has been devolved by legislation
to the Scottish Parliament or the National Assembly for Wales
unless the question:
(a) seeks information which the United Kingdom
Government is empowered to require of the devolved executive,
(b) relates to matters which:
(i) are included in legislative proposals introduced
or to be introduced in the United Kingdom Parliament,
(ii) are concerned with the operation of a concordat
or other instrument of liaison between the United Kingdom Government
and the devolved executive, or
(iii) United Kingdom Government ministers have
taken an official interest in, or
(c) presses for action by United Kingdom
ministers in areas in which they retain administrative powers."
This has erected a new barrier to Members' opportunities
to ask questions of ministers about Scottish and Welsh issues,
even where these relate to their own constituencies. Mutatis
mutandis, the same principles are applied by the Table Office
to questions relating to matters devolved to the Northern Ireland
executive and to the Mayor of London and the Greater London Assembly.
In respect of oral questions Members have to some extent managed
to get round the new restrictions, using devices such as "when
he last met [the relevant minister etc in the devolved body] to
discuss . . . .", thus opening up the possibility
of a supplementary question on a devolved matter, but detailed
written questions on devolved matters are now generally not possible.
4. Changes relating to the tabling and content
of questions include:
(a) moving of the time for the "shuffle"
from 4 pm to 5 pm (in 1991) and to 6.30 pm (in 2001) as an experiment
on the direction of the Speaker for the convenience of Members
who were not in the House until quite late in the day;
(b) abolition of the "blocks" system,
by which questions could not be asked on certain categories of
issues on which ministers had refused to answer. The Table Office
now follows the pattern of answers by ministers in any one session
in deciding whether questions are admissible. It also maintains
a list of matters on which ministers have refused answers. This
is submitted each year to the Select Committee on Public Administration
which annually asks departments about the reasons why questions
are not answered.
(c) questions are now allowed on ministerial
statements made outside the House and on policy towards the internal
affairs of foreign countries.
5. The system of printing questions and
answers has been streamlined: only the top questions in the "shuffle"
are printed; written questions are now published only on the Blue
order paper on the day after tabling and thereafter in the Order
Bookexcept for questions put down for the next day, almost
always those which are expected by the Government; and answers
from heads of agencies are printed in Hansard.
6. One noticeable non-procedural change
is the increased use of research assistants to prepare questions.
Many Members use them freely and it is clear that the same researchers
work for groups of Members. Frequently they telephone the Table
Office to ask about preparing questions or for other advice.
7. Appendix 1 sets out some statistics about
the use of the question system in recent years. None of the statistics
treats the answers qualitatively, recording a short answer in
the same way as an extensive one. They show nothing about whether
answers were satisfactory or to the point. Since the House resumed
in October 2001 there has been a marked increase in the number
of questions tabled, especially written questions, compared with
the same period in 2000. The graphs show fairly consistent patterns
of tabling although particular events (perhaps one or two Members
pursuing a matter vigorously by means of many questions) may throw
things out of kilter from time to time. It may be that the increased
tabling seen so far since the House's return in October will die
8. The Committee's questionnaire to Members
asks a wide range of questions about the working of the system.
Some of these matters are not for the Table Office to express
an opinion on but I will be very happy to provide a further paper
for the Committee on any aspects of the responses received to
the other sections of the questionnaire when these have been analysed.
The remainder of this paper focuses mainly on matters raised in
Sections C, D, E and F of the questionnaire.
9. Any discussion of questions needs to
start with an examination of what questions are for. Questions
are formal proceedings in Parliament, addressed by Members to
ministers and must relate to matters for which ministers are responsible
and on which they are accountable to Parliament. The basic rules
are quite clear. Questions must either press for action or seek
information and a question which has recently been answered may
not be asked again. The other rules relating to questions and
the practice of the Table Office on behalf of the House depend
on these central provisions and are intended to ensure that orderly
questions are not crowded out by those relating to matters of
debate for which other parliamentary opportunities are available.
The fundamental rules have been reconfirmed by successive Procedure
Committees, most recently in 1990-91.
10. Bearing in mind these fundamental principles
of what questions are designed to do, it is a matter for the House
(to some extent in consultation with the Government) to decide
how it wishes the system of questions to develop. There is a balance
to be struck between ease of use and maintaining a flexible system
which reflects the political needs of Members and protection of
the system from abuse. This balance is by no means easy to achieve.
11. In the case of written questions,
the rules appear to be well understood by Members and are generally
straightforward to apply. We have no immediate suggestions for
further modification or amendment of the rules as they relate
to the content of written questions, but I will be happy to provide
a further paper to the Committee if the responses to its questionnaire
suggest that any aspect of the rules require reconsideration.
12. The Leader's memorandum (para 15) makes
one suggestion about written questionsthat `planted' or
inspired questions be replaced by an entry on the Order
Paper giving notice of written statements by ministers expected
that day, which would then be published in a separate section
of that day's Official Report. This would be more transparent
than the present arrangements for such ministerial announcements
and it would be straightforward to devise a new section on the
Order Paper for the purpose. Instructions about entries in this
section could then be given to the Table Office by the Chief Whip's
office in the same manner as instructions are given for the next
day's effective orders.
13. The Committee may wish however to consider
whether at the same time to recommend removal of the right of
Members to table questions for answer the next day. Such questions
may at present be tabled by any Member and occasionally Members
ask for their questions to be set down for answer next day. As
these are ordinary written questions, Members may not insist on
an answer the next day and any such questions which are not inspired
by ministers will almost certainly not receive an answer that
day. However there might be circumstances when Members wish to
highlight their questions by putting them down for the next sitting
day and thus ensuring they are printed with the Order Paper. If
the Committee felt such opportunities should be retained it would
be feasible to retain the present system in addition to developing
a new method of announcing ministerial written statements.
14. The use of the named day system
has long been a subject of controversy. It is the habit of some
Members to table their written questions for the earliest named
day as a matter of course; sometimes this is a deliberate policy
on the part of the Member and the Table Office is obliged to follow
Members' instructions if they wish to specify a date for reply.
15. The number of named day questions, broken
down into those tabled for answer for the earliest available (first)
named day, first named day plus one, and other named days and
expressed as a percentage of all tabled written questions, shows
that the general use of named day question remains reasonably
constant. However, the summary of the responses to the question
by Mr Burns (see Appendix 1) about the proportion of named day
questions answered on the day requested reveals that out of 20
departments responding, only nine indicated that in the test period
they had answered more than half named day questions on the day
requested. Of those nine, three had answered about a third with
holding replies. Only six departments had anything like a reasonable
record in answering named day questions on the appropriate day.
There is no clear correlation between the success rate in answering
named day questions on the appointed day and the volume of questions
received. What is clear, is that the system of named day questions
is not working in the way in which is was designed to operate.
In its Report in 1990-91 (paras 53 to 75) the Procedure Committee
examined and rejected the idea that Members' use of written questions
should be rationed. It also exhorted Members to be sparing in
their use of named day questions (then known as priority written
16. The Speaker has made statements recently
about the quality and timeliness of departmental replies.
It has been recognised in the past that excessive use of the named
day procedure devalues it as a mechanism for ensuring a prompt
reply for a specific reason. The statistics cited above show that
there is a strong likelihood that the named day asked for will
not be complied with. The Committee may wish to revisit the idea
of rationing such questions so that only genuinely time-critical
questions have a named day for answer. If the Committee were minded
to recommend a system of rationing named day questions it would
be possible to maintain a register in the Table Office.
17. Much of the criticism of the named day
system concerns ministers' use of holding answers. If Members'
ability to specify named days for answer were rationed, the Committee
might wish to consider whether this should be balanced by additional
opportunities for Members to pursue matters if ministers did not
provide substantive answers to named day questions on the due
date. In the Chamber, where Members are dissatisfied with the
answers to oral questions, notice is sometimes given that in view
of the unsatisfactory nature of the reply, the Member intends
to raise the matter in an adjournment debate. The Committee might
wish to consider whether a Member who did not receive a substantive
answer to a named day question on the due date could be given
priority in a forthcoming ballot for adjournment debates, perhaps
in Westminister Hall. Such a penalty might discourage excessive
use by ministers of holding replies.
18. The Leader of the House has suggested
that the time for answering written questions be brought
forward from 3.30 pm to noon each day.
At present written answers may not be released before the end
of Question Time3.30 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays
and 12.30 pm on Thursdays. Answers may be released at any time
thereafter. It would probably not be convenient for departments
for written answers from the department whose minister was answering
oral questions on that day to be released earlier than the end
of Question Time, but there are no procedural reasons why answers
may not be released from a specified time earlier in the day.
The Speaker recently authorised the release of written answers
on Fridays from the time when the House meets instead of 12.00
noon as hitherto.
19. There are linked aspects of the rules
relating to both content and tabling of oral questions which the
Committee may wish to revisit. The requirement for ten days' notice
has been identified by the Leader of the House as one which might
The Procedure Committee in 1990-91 recommended that the notice
period be reduced to five sitting days.
There are no procedural reasons why a shorter period should not
work, such as the five working days proposed by the Procedure
Committee in its previous Report. Such a time limit is perfectly
workable from a Table Office point of view and the Table Office
would have no difficulty in operating whatever notice period was
20. The Committee may also wish to consider
whether more fundamental changes to the system of oral questions
should be addressed. It is by no means clear whether the present
rules on the content of questions currently reflect the wishes
and needs of Members. Notwithstanding the framework for Question
Time laid down by the list of questions set out on the Order Paper,
in practice Question Time is not often an occasion when Members
"seek information or press for action" as the rules
require. On many occasions it is closer to a series of interpellations,
almost mini-debates on broad areas of a minister's responsibilities.
It may be that the rules should be adjusted to reflect this reality.
At one extreme there could be questions without any notice to
departmental ministers. Alternatively the system could be altered
to try to encourage more "real" questions capable of
giving rise to more pointed supplementaries.
21. The Committee may also wish to reexamine
the rule prohibiting open questions to ministers other than the
Prime Minister. In its 1990-91 report, the Procedure Committee
concluded that, for Prime Minister's questions "the convenience
of the overwhelming majority of the House appears to be best served
by the flexibility and topicality inherent in the open question",
but recommended that oral questions to departmental ministers
should "be so worded as to indicate, within reasonably broad
limits, a particular subject matter".
A glance at the Order Paper for Question Time on virtually any
day shows that while oral questions are not technically "open"
in that some indication of the topic of the question is given,
they are very close to being open questions and the range of supplementaries
asked on a particular question may open up a very wide discussion
on broad policy issues. Most oral questions are in reality no
more than a "peg" on which to hang a supplementary and
do not in more than the most literal sense either seek information
or press for action.
22. In 1989-90 the Procedure Committee carried
out an inquiry into oral questions. One idea then considered was
a suggestion by the then Principal Clerk (Charles Winnifrith)
for replacing the present arrangements for tabling oral questions
with a preliminary ballot for the opportunity to ask an oral question,
to be followed in due course by the tabling of the question itself.
Appendix 2 reproduces the proposal made to the Committee in 1989-90.
On that occasion the Committee rejected the idea on the grounds
that it would "separate to an unacceptable degree the act
of tabling a question from the method used to determine its precedence
on the order paper".
The Committee also noted that "if the order of questions
was already known, the temptation for those organising syndicates
to bring pressure to bear on Members who had been successful in
the ballot would be all the stronger".
23. The 1989-90 inquiry took place in the
context of a marked rise in the practice of syndication of oral
questions, described by the Committee as the farming out by Parliamentary
Private Secretaries or Whips of groups of identical or near-identical
and often vague questions to large numbers of Members with a view
to increasing the probability of questions on selected topics
coming out high in the shuffle and dominating Question Time.
To counter that practice the Committee recommended two changes,
which were agreed to by the House. These were that Members must
table oral questions in person in the Table Office and that notice
of oral questions may not be sent by post.
24. Although there was some immediate reduction
in the practice of syndication of oral questions following the
House's agreement to these changes in the rules, the practice
has certainly not disappeared. Syndication continues to be a feature
of oral questions. It is not possible to give precise numbers
but the clerks in the Office estimate that on some days anything
up to half the questions tabled to a particular department may
be syndicated and they frequently have to advise Members seeking
to table identical or near identical questions that, as more than
four or five identical questions have already been tabled, they
are unable to accept the question being proffered. The Committee
may wish to consider whether it agrees with the conclusion of
its predecessors, that syndication was "quite simply an abuse"
or whether some degree of stage-managing Question Time has now
become accepted by all sides of the House as inevitable.
25. If the Committee were to conclude that
an element of stage-management by the parties of Question Time
is now an accepted aspect of the House's proceedings, then a preliminary
ballot for the opportunity to ask an oral question could greatly
simplify the way in which Members give notice of questions and
Members (and Table Office clerks) would be able to give more considered
attention to the questions to be put to Ministers for oral answer.
Members successful in the ballot would have longer to consider
their questions and the actual questions tabled might then become
more precise and less "open", giving the possibility
of more relevant and pointed supplementaries at Question Time.
In particular, up to 300 Members each Wednesday take the opportunity
to table oral questions to the Prime Minister, almost all of which
are the conventional open "engagements" question. An
overt ballot for Prime Minister's questions might encourage significantly
more questions to the Prime Minister to be substantive questions.
Syndication would not be prevented by moving to a preliminary
ballot, but the risk of the Order Paper being dominated by questions
on a single theme should disappear (and could be reinforced, if
necessary, by a rule prohibiting more than, say, two identical
questions on any one day). If the Committee is minded to reconsider
a preliminary ballot, the Table Office can prepare a further note
on how it might operate in practice.
26. If the Committee decides to retain the
present link between tabling and the determining of the order
in which questions are answered, the Committee may wish to consider
whether any other changes to the arrangements for tabling oral
questions are desirable.
Time for tabling oral questions
27. At present, oral questions must be tabled
on a particular day. There are always more questions tabled for
oral answer than can be reached and the random "shuffle"
has been long accepted as the fairest way of determining the order
in which the Members' questions will be called. There must clearly
be a final time for tabling in order for the "shuffle"
to go ahead. Standing Order No. 22(5) provides that questions
for oral answer may not be tabled on a day earlier than ten sitting
days before the day for answer. Since the Procedure Commitee inquiry
into oral questions in 1989-90, it has also been the rule that
members must table oral questions in person in the office and
that notice of oral questions may not be sent by post.
28. There could be advantages to Members
if the Table Office were allowed to receive questions in advance
of the due dateon, say, any sitting day after the last
day on which each minister answered. Thus Members could table
questions at times which were convenient to them and, for example,
Members away from Westminster on Select Committee or other visits
would be able to table oral questions. Members could also discuss
the terms of their question and its orderliness with the Table
Office at any time, which would reduce the over-crowding and queues
in the Office at peak times and there would be longer in which
to ascertain whether the question was likely to be transferred.
It is already the case that a Member may (on the date it is tabled)
amend or withdraw a question tabled in advance of the time for
the "shuffle". Members could therefore amend questions
tabled on earlier days until the time of the "shuffle"
on the due day. A consequential change which would be necessary
is that Members would have to deposit questions not for a particular
day but for the next slot for a particular department as the exact
dates of recesses which alter the timetable for the order of questions
may not be known until quite late.
29. The additional administrative burden
on the Table Office staff which would result from such a change
would be considerable and systems would be necessary to avoid
the possibility of error when handling larger numbers of questions
for different days. There would need to be constant monitoring
of oral questions received so that accurate records were kept
of who had tabled. Members would inevitably wish to amend their
questions before the "shuffle" to take account of recent
developments. Members might forget whether they had tabled for
a particular department. This would lead to them being disadvantaged
under the current rules, as both their questions would be included
in the "shuffle" and the lower placed one would
be taken as setting the order in which the Member's question appeared.
To lessen the possibility of error more time would be needed to
process the "shuffle" each day, and to enable its results
to be known and the list of oral questions to be printed the next
day it would be necessary for the time for the "shuffle"
to be brought forward to earlier in the afternoon. However, the
reason behind the moving of the shuffle to a later time would
30. The Leader of the House has suggested
that the long summer recess be replaced by two shorter recesses,
with a September sitting. If these proposals are implemented,
many of the criticisms of the present arrangements where questions
may not be answered during the summer break may be dealt with.
The following paragraphs discuss some ways in which questions
may be made more topical over long breaks, some of which the Commitee
may wish to consider when the outcome of the Leader's proposals
about the calendar are clear.
31. At present, oral questions are
tabled 10 sitting days before the due date for answer. The system
continues seamlessly when the House comes up to an adjournment
period, so that questions are accepted for dates after the break
on the appropriate day of the week (as nearly as may be). This
rule results in Members being required to table in the last fortnight
that the House sits in July for departmental questions in early
or even mid-October. This can produce some absurd results, where
an issue may cease to be of importance in the intervening months
or may be eclipsed by events which everyoneGovernment,
the Member questioning and the rest of the countryis much
more interested in, but which do not appear on the Paper. In these
circumstances, a Member may be forced to ask a question he or
she no longer particularly wants to be answered.
32. One possible solution to this difficulty
would be to reduce the notice period, as suggested by the Leader
of the House. But any notice period would mean some questions
were tabled in early summer, up to several weeks or months ahead
of the date for answering. Another approach could be to allow
oral questions to be tabled in the adjournment in the period just
before the House resumes. At present Members must table oral questions
in person in the Office. Thus Members would have to bring oral
questions to the Table Office in the fortnight before the House
resumed; this would inconvenience those Members whose constituences
were not near Westminster. This might be less of a problem if
the time for tabling for oral questions was telescoped, like at
the start of a Session, when a multiplicity of orals are taken
for the following week. It would be worth considering whether
Members might be allowed to table oral questions in the week before
the House resumes for the first two weeks after a recess.
33. Other solutions could also be considered.
Whatever view the Committee takes about the proposal for a preliminary
ballot to determine the precedence on the Order paper described
above, such a ballot might be appropriate for questions after
a long recess (with the actual text of the question tabled, say,
a week before the House returns). Alternatively, Members could
be allowed to amend or change their questions up to, say, five
days before the House resumes after the recess by analogy with
the present arrangements for 10-minute rule bills, where Members
may change the subject of their proposed bill up to five days
before the date when they are due to propose it to the House.
34. The long period of silence during the
summer recess when no written questions can be answered
has troubled Members for a considerable time. The present system
already allows Members to submit written questions during the
summer and these are examined and edited by the Table Office towards
the end of the recess and printed in a draft Blue notice paper,
so that Government departments have some warning of them. Any
system of tabling and answering questions during recesses would
have financial implications for the House in that notices of questions
and the answers would need to be printed. The Committee will no
doubt wish to seek ministers' views about the feasibility of providing
ministerial answers during the whole of the holiday season when
the relevant officials and ministers may not always be available,
and the Leader's proposals about the parliamentary calendar may
reduce the demand for questions to be answered during summer recesses.
It would be possible to set up a system by which written questions
were printed on one day in the week for answer a set number of
days later. The Committee will no doubt also wish to seek evidence
from the Editor of the Official Report on the additional costs
associated with such a scheme.
35. Tabling of questions by e-mail is an
issue which was raised by the Procedure Committee in the last
Parliament. My predecessor's memorandum is attached as Appendix
3. The position remains as set out there. The Office could receive
such questions, but there would be important consequences which
merit serious consideration. The question of Members' providing
adequate authority for questions and for amendments to questions
in order to bring them into order remains to be settled, as well
as the danger of the question system beng open to abuse. The Table
office has dealt with draft questions and EDMs as well as other
queries by e-mail on occasion (although few Members have used
this facility) and is committed to assist in the expansion of
using new technology, where appropriate. If the suggestion of
a preliminary ballot for oral questions is taken up, Members could
perhaps enter that ballot by e-mailor clear the text of
the proposed eventual question by e-mail.
36. If a satisfactory means of authenticating
questions tabled electronically can be identifed, and the
Committee is minded to recommend that this be permitted, it might
wish also to seek evidence from the Clerk of the House or the
Clerk of Legislation about whether such a system could or should
be adopted in relation to other notices, of motions or of amendments
to Bills. If tabling of questions by e-mail is permitted, we would
anticipate a further consideration increase in overall numbers
of questions submitted, which might have staffing implications
for the Table Office.
37. Linked to the use of e-mail is the question
of allowing tabling by Members' assistants. At present the rule
is quite strict. Assistants may deposit signed, written
questions, but the Table Office may not take instructions about
them from anyone except the Member. Strictly speaking, the Office
should not even discuss them with anyone except the Member, but
a common sense interpretation of the rule means that general
advice may be given to Members' assistants who telephone the Office.
Previously, the view has been that allowing Members' assistants
into the Office at busy times would create more of a blockage
in what is already a rather crowded office. There is a further
practical problem in that unlike the Public Bill Office, which
does allow representations to be made by specified staff about
amendments to bills in Committee, the Table Office deals with
many Members and it would be impossible to know each staff member
in each Member's office. The Table Office could not guarantee
that it would only accept instructions from authorised staff members.
38. The question of principle as to whether
assistants should table on behalf of their Members is difficult.
Questions are formal proceedings in Parliament and like any other
proceeding their content is the responsibility of the Member.
There are many occasions when the Members will take a tabled question
away if there is a problem with it to discuss it with their assistant
and often the assistant will know more than the Member tabling
the question. Nonetheless, as noted in the Table Office's memorandum
relating to the e-mailing of questions, it would be a major departure
from current practice with far reaching implications to allow
Members' staff to authorise any changes to such questions in the
absence of a Member.
39. The Committee has asked for Members'
views about the training of their staff. In this and the last
Parliament, the Table Office has taken part in briefings offered
to new Members and would be happy to extend similar briefings
to Members' staff if the Committee's questionnaire elicits a demand
for such a service.
40. There have been a number of changes
to the Order Paper in recent years designed to make it clearer.
One Member has pointed out to us (and to the Committee) that the
Blue notice paper published each morning which contains the questions
tabled on the preceding day is difficult to read. The questions
are already separated by date of answer asked for and are listed
in alphabetical order of department and Members' surnames. If
the Committee agreed, it would be a relatively simple matter to
insert headings to reflect this organization of the paper and
little or no expense would be involved.
41. At present most questions to the Prime
Minister are ``engagements'' questions, which allow a Member to
raise any issue. It is a puzzling part of House procedure for
those who are unfamiliar with how the Chamber works and setting
out the text of the question on the Order Paper makes little sense
now that the Speaker simply calls Members with later questions
to put a question without notice to the Prime Minister. It would
make the Order Paper clearer to visitors and others if the engagements
questions (or at least all after the first question) were no longer
printed in question form. Members who were successful in the ballot
could just have their names printed under a rubric which indicated
that, unless a question was printed under their name, they would
ask an ``open'' question. This would have the added effect of
emphasising the substantive questions tabled by those Members
who regularly do so. Such questions are at present swamped by
the repeated engagements questions.
14 January 2002
1 Modernisation of the House of Commons: a reform programme
for consultation, HC 440 (2001-02) (hereafter "Memorandum"). Back
First Report (1989-90), HC 379 on Oral Questions; Third Report
(1990-91), HC 178, on Parliamentary Questions. Back
See eg Second Report from the Select Committee on Public Administration,
HC 61, 2000-2001 and the Speaker's statement of 28th November
2001, Official Report, col 971. Back
First Report from the Select Committee on Procedure, HC 178 (1990-91),
paras 84, 120 and 121. Back
FCO: 6 per cent; POC: 0 per cent; SG: 0 per cent OSSW: 0 per
cent; DWP: 6 per cent; PM: 19 per cent of questions answered with
holding replies. Back
Official Report, 21 November 2001, cols 320-21; 28 November 2001,
col 971. Back
Memorandum, para 54. Back
Official Report, 30 October 2001, col 250WH. Back
Memorandum, para 13. Back
HC 178 (1990-91), para 21. Back
HC 178 (1990-91), para 38. Back
HC 178 (1990-91), para 43. Back
First Report from the Select Committee on Procedure, HC 379 (1989-90),
para 18. Back
HC 379 (1989-90), para 10. Back
HC 379 (1989-90), para 11. Back