Committee chair tells MPs not to use parliamentary procedure in Welsh
The chair of a Westminster committee has told MPs not to use a parliamentary procedure in the Welsh language.
Geraint Davies, the Labour MP for Swansea West, said to members of the Welsh Grand Committee that they “may speak Welsh” but that they should make a point of order in English.
Welsh MPs met yesterday for a debate titled: “To consider the matter of Strengthening the Union as it relates to Wales”.
MPs were previously not allowed to make speeches in Welsh during Welsh Grand Debates. The rules were changed to allow speeches in Welsh in 2018.
A number of Welsh MPs took advantage of the rule change to make a speech in Welsh during the debate yesterday.
In a committee, a point of order can be raised if a member believes that a rule has been broken. The member can interrupt during a debate to do so, and the parliamentary procedure calls upon the chair to make a ruling on whether a rule has been broken or not.
The chair of the Welsh Grand Committee said: “It’s about 20 speakers so I’m going to ask people to be brief in the openings and to get some of the backbenchers and others in this morning as well as the front benches. Just bear that in mind. I do want to call everybody.
“I’ve no power though to impose any particular time limit, but as I say brief contributions would be appreciated by all I’m sure.
He added: “Under the resolution of the House, 1st of March 2017 on St David’s Day, members of the committee may speak in Welsh. I ask however that points of order be made in English if that’s alright.
“Simultaneous interpretations available via the headsets that you should have been had and that will be on channel 12. Channel 2 in fact. Sorry. It keeps changing actually.
“Any speech that’s delivered in Welsh can be found in Hansard in both languages.”
It was the first Welsh Grand Committee to be held in Westminster since 2018.
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