HC Deb 22 February 1972 vol 831 c1114
Mr. Arthur Lewis

On a point of order. You will recollect, Mr. Speaker, that I gave you notice that I had a point of order on Questions and I thought that this was the appropriate time to raise it.

Mr. Speaker

I beg the hon. Member's pardon. He is quite right.

Mr. Lewis

I gave you notice, Mr. Speaker—perhaps not adequate notice—that I wanted to raise a point of order about the Notices of Questions and Motions yesterday, No. 62, with particular reference to page 4025. I tabled 18 similar Questions asking about the sinecures which 18 Peers of the Realm hold in another place.

Each of these 18 Questions, which were all accepted, referred at the end to the £8.50 "tax-free expense allowance". Strangely, in each Question the Table Office has left out the word "tax-free".

My Questions were based on the fact that the allowance is tax-free, and drew attention to the fact. The Table is, of course, entitled to put a Question in order, but surely not to leave out the most important part, which is based on fact.

This might have been a typographical error in only one Question, but I suggest that the Table is not entitled to delete from a Question something for which the hon. Member concerned takes responsibility, particularly when, as in this case, it is a statement of fact.

Mr. Speaker

I will certainly go into this matter and will deal with it either publicly, or privately, as seems to me correct.