Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from November, 2014

Secret Prisoners judgment comment

I am pleased with the judgment issued today from the court of appeal.  My concern is to stop people being imprisoned in secret.  This judgment is an important step towards that objective.  There are three key things

Firstly, it recognises that a lot of people are still locked up without proper public scrutiny.

Secondly, it adds to guidance and reinforces guidance to stop this happening.

Thirdly, it ensures that there is an authority that can be used to find out who has been imprisoned if someone finds out that a secret jailing has happened.

It does not, however, as yet accept that a secret imprisonment in itself is cause for someone to be released.  That is an issue that I will be looking at in more depth.  It is, obviously, difficult to make an application to court for the imprisonment of someone in secret as it it is entirely secret no-one will know.  Hence it is difficult to find authorities for this situation.

The problem as I see it is that people have been imprisone…

Parliamentary Motions and Yesterday's debate

Yesterday's debate demonstrated the relatively counterintuitive nature of parliamentary procedure. We had the movement of the "previous question". This did happen in the last parliament. Once.

It wasn't very clever to do this as it merely had the effect of truncating debate. If it gets moved too often we will find that the rules are changed to prevent this.

The most important point is that only a limited range of parliamentary motions have an actual effect.  Motions relating to statutory instruments have an effect.  Those on european scrutiny issues have a partial effect, but are in fact not binding as the ministers can make decisions in the European Council before such a motion passes.   Motions that affect the House of Commons (order of debate, suspending or expelling members, standing orders, committees etc) do have an effect.  Those which are in conjunction with a finance bill also have an effect.

However, a motion that says "This House instructs the Gove…

Petition about Acocks Green Post Office

I have extracted and uploaded to Youtube the presentation of the Petition about Acocks Green Post Office. There are two ways of presenting petitions. One is the process in this video. The other is to simply put the petition in a bag at the back of the Speaker's chair. Petitions are presented at the "moment of interruption" which is just before the adjournment debate. Often the Moment of Interruption is known in advance, but on Monday it happened a lot earlier than planned.