Seanad Éireann - Volume 104 - 06 June, 1984

Order of Business.

Professor Dooge: It is proposed to order Nos. 1, 2, 3 and 4. It is proposed to take a break from 5.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. and to take No. 4 from 6.30 p.m. to 8 p.m. By general agreement, the House will sit tomorrow and will not sit next week.

Mr. Lanigan: If we sit tomorrow what business will we take? Could we have an indication as to when the motion No. 9 will be resumed? I think at this stage when there is an election for the European Parliament pending it would be an opportune time to give Members of this House the opportunity to continue on this motion. It is an extremely important [216] one and I would like to get an indication from the Leader of the House as to when that motion will be taken.

Mr. Ross: At the risk of being accused of being a disruptive Member of the House, as some of the Independent Senators were last week, I am opposing the Order of Business. I have consistently asked that motion No. 18, for a debate on the Forum, should be taken in either the Seanad or the Dáil. The Government have consistently refused to hold a debate on the Forum which is as important an event as we have had in this country for many years. I am proposing that today we take motion No. 18 in the names of Senator Catherine McGuinness and myself so that the Seanad or at least one Member of the Houses of the Oireachtas can be allowed to discuss the Forum.

Mrs. Rogers: I ask that the House would note the comments of a judge in Belfast yesterday in the Crown Court. I recognise that perhaps I am out of order in saying this but I take a serious view that a judge would say what he said. The erosion of confidence in the Judiciary that I talked about recently in this House is now a collapse of confidence and I think it is a serious matter for the country as a whole that this should happen.

An Cathaoirleach: The Senator is out of order.

Professor Dooge: In regard to the business tomorrow, it is proposed that we should continue on with whatever of today's business is not completed. Realistically this means that we will be taking Second Stage of the Copyright (Amendment) Bill, 1984, and Second Stage of the Land Bill, 1984. It had been my intention also to order tomorrow item No. 5 but in view of what the Leader of the Opposition has said about motion No. 9, and I agree with what he says in that regard, I will inquire in the course of the afternoon whether it could be ordered also for tomorrow. In this connection, Senators will note that the report covering the second half of 1983 in regard to developments in the EEC has now been published. [217] We now have both official reports covering the period which is the subject of this motion. It is suitable that it should be taken up and this is the only opportunity we have to take it up before polling day in the European election.

In regard to item No. 18, which is a Private Member's motion, it will in due course be the turn of the Independent group in this House to occupy Private Members' Time or two successive Wednesdays and that motion can be brought forward then. It is not intended to set down a Government motion in this House in regard to the New Ireland Forum at the moment. If at any time it is thought that the tabling of such a motion and its debate by the House here would help the objective of the Forum, then the motion will be put down.

An Cathaoirleach: Is the Order of Business agreed to?

Mr. Ross: No.

An Cathaoirleach: Senator Ross has moved an amendment to the Order of Business. The question is: “That the amendment be made." Is that agreed?

Professor Dooge: No.

Mr. Ross: Vótáil.

An Cathaoirleach: Will the Senators who claimed the division please rise in their places.

Senator Ross rose.

Mr. Ross: It seems I am the only person who wants to talk about the protection of people; the rest of the Seanad would rather talk about the protection of animals.

An Cathaoirleach: The amendment is defeated. The name of the Senator will appear in the Journal of the Proceedings as dissenting.

Order of Business agreed to.