Schedule 8 - Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice

Part of Justice (Northern Ireland) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee am 7:15 pm ar 5 Chwefror 2002.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Des Browne Des Browne Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Northern Ireland Office, Parliamentary Secretary (Northern Ireland Office) 7:15, 5 Chwefror 2002

That is a demanding question to ask even a Minister about a Bill of this size. However, I can answer it in respect of the principles involved. When

responsibility is devolved, what the hon. Member for Reigate suggests is by and large correct. In the event of an interregnum before devolution, that will not apply to all the references in the Bill to the Secretary of State. I shall check that. At this stage of consideration of a Bill of this size, I am not prepared to answer categorically. However, the principle that I enunciated and that the hon. Gentleman kindly said was clear applies to all cases in which something will change before devolution and devolution follows. That is the best that I can do at the moment. That does not apply to the Secretary of State's functions in the excepted field or the reserved field. Functions in the reserved field that relate to criminal justice will, by and large, be devolved.