New Speaker sets down tough rules for ministerial statements

June 24, 2009 at 2:51 pm Leave a comment

The new Speaker of the House of Commons made a short statement to MPs just before Prime Minister’s Questions today.

“When ministers have key policy statements to make, the House must be the first to hear them, and they should not be released beforehand.

“Secondly, in statements, I ask frontbenchers to stick to their alloted time. I ask also that the backbench members taking part each confine themselves to one brief supplementary question. In the same vein I hope that minister’s replies will be kept to a reasonable length.

“Finally, I always expect that those speaking in this chamber will be heard, so that an atmosphere of calm, reasoned debate will be maintained.”

In a confident PMQs debut, Speaker Bercow told off MPs for noisy behaviour, at one point saying: “The public doesn’t like it and neither do I.”

John Bercow, the MP for Buckingham, was elected Speaker on Monday after three rounds of voting.


Entry filed under: Commons, Procedure.

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