Office of Communications Bill [Lords]

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Mr. Ian Pearson (Dudley, South): On a point of order, Mr. Gale. I want to put it on record that at no time have I had any communication from the Opposition Whip or the Opposition chief spokesperson that they had any difficulty with reaching clause 3 at this stage of the proceedings. They spent more than five hours debating clause 2, and it is not unreasonable for me to suspect that they could have been well briefed to get at least as far as clause 3.

The Chairman: Order. None of these are matters for the Chairman. As far as the Chairman is concerned, negotiations between the usual channels do not exist. What exists is what is on the Order Paper, and what is available for debate is therefore on the Order Paper. There has clearly been some misunderstanding—on whose part I do not seek to judge. The only additional advice that I can give to the Committee is that it is open to any member of the Committee to move that further consideration of the Bill be adjourned. If that motion is put, I will, as the Chairman, put it to the Committee. I cannot predict the outcome.

Further consideration adjourned.—[Mr. Pearson.]

Adjourned accordingly at eighteen minutes past Five o'clock till Tuesday 5 February at half-past Ten o'clock.

Column Number: 205

The following Members attended the Committee:
Gale, Mr. Roger (Chairman)
Allan, Mr.
Bailey, Mr.
Fabricant, Mr.
Farrelly, Paul
Grogan, Mr.
Harvey, Nick
Howells, Dr.
Jackson, Glenda
Kemp, Mr.
Linton, Martin

Column Number: 206

McIntosh, Miss
Miller, Mr.
Pearson, Mr.
Picking, Anne
Rammell, Mr.
Robertson, Mr. Laurence
Taylor, Mr. Ian
Thomas, Mr. Simon
Watkinson, Angela
White, Brian

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