§ Mr. Anthony Fell
I wish to raise a definite matter of urgent public importance, namely, the national standstill order enforced from today on the movement of livestock resulting from foot-and-mouth disease notification, and to move the Adjournment of the House.
§ Mr. Speaker
The hon. Gentleman has asked leave to move the Adjournment of the House to raise a definite matter of public importance, namely, the national standstill order enforced on the movement of livestock resulting from foot-and-mouth disease notification. I find this matter impossible to bring within the limits of the Standing Order on the grounds of urgency. This policy which is being applied by the standstill order arises out of legislation passed by this House, and has been a policy of a long continuing character for many years. Though it is no doubt urgent from the agricultural point of view, I cannot find it urgent from the point of view of the Standing Order.
§ Mr. R. T. Paget
I wish to raise a matter for information. Is there not a distinction between the standstill orders which we have been accustomed to and which have been part of the law for four years but which were confined to a radius of 15 miles outward, and this entirely new and quite unprecedented order applying to the whole country? It is a standstill order of all the cattle everywhere in the country? That, in my submission, is something entirely new, and its implications, I think, are a matter of very great urgency. It is one thing to say that this policy is worthwhile when it is confined to a small area; it is another to say that the whole cattle trade of the country has to be brought to a standstill.
§ Mr. Speaker
I have listened with great care to what the hon. and learned Gentleman has said, and I appreciate that a universal standstill order does differ in degree from the normal standstill orders in different parts of the country, but I cannot agree that for the purpose of the Standing Order this action, which is taken in pursuance of legislation passed by this House and is of long standing continuance, falls within the Standing Order.