Wednesday, 29 January 1992
Dáil Éireann Debate
Mr. J. Bruton: On a point of order, Sir, before the House proceeds to Question Time may I ask whether you consider the privileges of Members of this House are being adequately protected vis-à-vis those of the Executive in so far as on 30 March 1990 this House conferred on the Broadcasting Control Committee responsibility for managing the broadcasting of this House. I understand a decision was taken by the Taoiseach, who is not a member of that committee, that RTE would not be allowed to broadcast Question Time live today. I believe that is a serious incursion on the proper rights of the Broadcasting Control Committee, which is an instrument of this House and that the Taoiseach, who is not a member of this committee had no proper——
An Ceann Comhairle: This is quite unusual. The Chair commented on the matter to which Deputy Bruton refers this morning and I indicated that in my opinion it was a matter for the Broadcasting Control Committee.
Mr. J. Bruton: May I ask Sir, if you are aware that the Broadcasting Control Committee did not meet and that the chairman has refused to convene a meeting of the committee and yet the decision was taken by the chairman, who is a member of the Government, and the Taoiseach——
Mr. J. Bruton: May I submit that as Ceann Comhairle of this House, it is your responsibility to ensure that the Government are not allowed to arrogate to themselves functions that are proper to a committee of this House. May I suggest with the utmost respect that it is up to you to ensure that the privileges of the House are protected in this fashion.
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