It is proposed to take business in the following order: Nos. 20, 21, 3 to 13, 14 and 22. If not already reached, it is proposed to take Nos. 3 to 13, 14 and 22 at 7 p.m.
Order of Business.
I should like your guidance, a Cheann Comhairle, on a certain matter. I asked to have the following question tabled to the Taoiseach and you indicated, I suppose properly, that the matter was not within the official responsibility of the Taoiseach: I asked the Taoiseach whether, in advance of the next Dáil debate on Northern Ireland, he would issue an open invitation to the elected representatives in Northern Ireland constituencies to both Stormont and Westminster to take part in the debate and whether he will move the suspension of Standing Orders——
The question has been ruled out of order and we cannot have a discussion on it or on the Chair's ruling at this stage.
With all respect, I thought I should mention the question first of all and then get your advice as to how this could be implemented. I accept, without any qualification, that it is not within the official responsibility——
The Deputy cannot get round the rules in this fashion.
I do not expect the Taoiseach to answer. I accept that he has no official responsibility.
The Deputy has been informed that this is out of order and the Deputy may not discuss the matter. If the Deputy wishes to come to see me, I will discuss the matter with him.
You have told me it is not within the official responsibility of the Taoiseach. May I respectfully ask whose responsibility would it be—the Committee on Procedure and Privileges or the House?
If the Deputy comes to see me, I will discuss the matter with him. The matter is not within the Rules of Order of the House.
It is a very serious request.
There cannot be any further discussion on this matter. It has been ruled out of order.
I am accepting what you state and I will visit you in your chambers.
On a point of order, I asked a special notice question to ask the Minister for Justice——
There is no need to read the question. The question has been considered. There is no need to read the question to the Chair.
But there is this serious matter and, with all humility——
——it is a matter of public concern. I refer to the number of fire outbreaks and I ask the Minister for Justice whether his Department are having any special investigation——
The Deputy may not discuss the matter.
It is a matter of extreme importance.
The Deputy may not discuss the matter. He cannot get round the Rules of Order of this House in this way.
There is very little of importance we can discuss in this House in recent times.
This House is being muzzled increasingly.
The question failed to qualify for private notice since it did not have the requisite degree of urgency under the Standing Order. The question can be submitted as an ordinary question. There is no muzzling of any Deputies.
There is an abuse of the procedure of the House. That is what it is.
Let the Minister not talk about abuses.
I am talking about the abuse of procedure by the Labour Party, for base political motives.