§ Mr. David Logan
Mr. Speaker, I should like to raise a question with you for your guidance. I sought to raise a Private Notice Question, but was unable to do so, the other day. When I got back to Liverpool I found that many people there resented my not having asked the Question I wanted to ask. It was about the humiliation of British seamen being chained together. It seemed to me necessary that this Question, for the sake of all the seafaring people of Liverpool and, indeed, of the whole nation, should be brought to the notice of the House. In your discretion, Mr. Speaker, you ruled that, as the men had been released, it was impossible to raise the matter as a Private Notice Question.
I therefore take this opportunity of raising the matter with the two-fold purpose of making it known that I did seek to raise the matter but that you, Mr. Speaker, in your discretion refused to allow a Private Notice Question; and of asking your guidance in case anything of the kind should occur again. If British seamen are humiliated again in a foreign 832 country by being chained together what action can I take in this House about it?
§ Mr. Speaker
I remember the hon. Gentleman's Question, and as a Question on the Paper it was in order, but I have to be careful about Private Notice Questions. There has to be some urgency about them. The hon. Gentleman will recall that, when he first asked his Question about these men, while they were in prison, I had no hesitation in allowing him to put forward the Question; but when they were released I felt that, in the interests of other hon. Members who had Questions on the Paper, it was not then a fit Question for a Private Notice Question.