Sunday, August 26, 2012


Source: The Clerk to Parliament A Member contributing to a Motion ought to be heard in silence. However, he/she may be interrupted by another Member rising on a point of order, matter of privilege, point of information, point of elucidation or point of procedure. POINT OF ORDER A point of order is a matter raised concerning the breach of rules of Parliamentary procedure. It can also be raised on other matters requiring Parliament to proceed in an organized manner. A Member may raise a Point of Order if any Member: Uses offensive, abusive, insulting, blasphemous or unbecoming words or to impute improper motives to any Member or makes personal allusions. Attempts to reconsider any specific question upon which the House has come to a conclusion during the current Session. Presents issues without making reference to the subject matter under discussion. The Speaker shall make a ruling on a Point of Order before the House proceeds with Business. If the Speaker accepts the Point of Order, it is said to be sustained. If not, it is said to be overturned. POINT/MATTER OF PRIVILEGE A point/matter of privilege may be raised by any Member in the House who thinks that the privileges of the House have been breached or are about to be breached rendering it difficult for the House to proceed with its business. For instance strangers are not allowed to sit in the Chamber and so a Member may rise and bring this to the attention of the House and demand that the strangers withdraw from the House. The Speaker would then direct the strangers to withdraw immediately from the House. POINT OF INFORMATION A point of information is a request made by a Member desiring to provide additional information to a Member holding the floor through the Speaker. A Member may rise on a point of order to update, correct or nullify information given by a Member holding the floor. It is the prerogative of the Member holding the floor to allow another Member to give information; and once he/she accepts to take information, the time spent doing so is deducted from the time that had been allotted to the Member holding the floor. POINT OF PROCEDURE Debates may be interrupted upon a point of procedure; and where a Member rises on a point of procedure the Member holding the floor shall immediately resume his/her seat. Where a point of procedure has been raised; except by leave of the Speaker, no other Member rises until the Speaker has decided upon the matter. A Member interrupting debate on a point of procedure shall state the specific rule of procedure that has been breached by a Member holding the floor. Where effect has been given to the decision on the point of procedure, the Member who was speaking is entitled to proceed with his/her speech unless the decision prevents him/her from doing so. POINT OF ELUCIDATION A Member may rise on a point of elucidation to seek for an explanation that serves to clear up, cast more light and remove any obstacle that would prevent him/her from understanding an issue. When giving leave to interruption debate the Speaker shall follow the following precedence: Point/matter of Privilege Points of procedure; Points of Order; Points of information, elucidation

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