Members ask Questions to obtain information on a matter of fact. They are addressed to a person who would be expected to have particular knowledge of the subject, usually the Minister for the responsible Department.
Examples of questions include:
The Hon. Member of Council to ask the Chief Minister –
Whether the Government has an Early Years Strategy and, if so, what priority is given by the Government to early years strategy and intervention?
The Hon. Member for Garff to ask the Minister for Education and Children –
What the annual administrative cost to the Department is of collecting data from schools as required by the Education Act 2001?
The Hon. Member for Douglas North to ask the Chief Minister –
What his Government’s policy is in respect of note taking at official meetings between departmental officers and third parties from outside Government?
The Hon Member for Douglas South to ask the Minister for Education -
Whether her Department has set guidelines that apply to schools with regard to the reasons why a pupil can be suspended from school with any recommended period of time for such a suspension?
Members may ask Questions on any almost any matter, and it is here that they have the opportunity to scrutinise the work of Government.
Submitting a Question
Members may table Questions
for Oral or Written Answer. They are submitted on a special form to Table
in the Chamber & Information Service of the Clerk of Tynwald’s Office.
Questions should be clearly written and must be signed by the Member.
The Clerks examine the
notices of Questions closely to ensure that they conform to the rules for
asking questions. Should it be necessary, the Clerks will consult the
Member regarding the content or wording of any Questions and, where required,
matters may be referred to the presiding officer for a decision.
Click here for more information on how to write Questions.
Asking A Question
Prior to a sitting all
Members receive a copy of the Order Paper and, in the case of a Tynwald
sitting, the Question Paper. During the sitting the Questions are taken in the
order in which they appear on the Question Paper. For each Question, the Member
who submitted the question is called on by the presiding officer. The Member
stands and reads out his or her Question. Once the Question has been
asked in this way the presiding officer calls on ‘the Member to reply’, and the
Member to whom the Question was addressed will reply.
Once this initial reply has
been received, Members may ask supplementary Questions. Normally the Member
who has tabled the Question will be called first to ask a supplementary
Question, should they want to. The number of supplementary Questions
permitted following a tabled Question is at the discretion of the presiding
officer, otherwise the same guidance rules apply to supplementary Questions as
to tabled Questions.
If the Member answering the
Question has not included something another Member wants to know, they may
stand as the previous speaker concludes to indicate to the presiding
officer that they wish to ask a supplementary Question. However, debate is not permitted
to flow from this procedure and so Questions must not introduce matters not
included in the original Question.
In a normal sitting, there
is a set period reserved for oral questions: in the House of Keys,
this is one hour; in Tynwald Court, this is two and a half hours. Unless
Members agree to suspend Standing Orders, any Questions not reached during this
time receive a written answer.
Order and Question Papers.
Listen Again to Questions.
Read more about Questions.