The morning session, the 5th (of only 8 sessions) must have been some sort of Parliamentary tactic by the Conservatives to delay proceedings, which was crushed by the introduction and passing of another Programming Amendment, which is not quite what those of you familiar with computer programming etc. might at first think.
This is what is called by the press a "guillotine", i.e. a vote to limit the amount of time which is allocated for debate, which is used by the party with a majority to counter the opposition's delaying tactics, or to try to sneak controversial clauses past Members of Parliament without any debate or amendments. In the strange argot and jargon used in the House of Commons, the Members of Parliament refer to this as "the use of knives", which again, is not immediatly obvious to the onlooking public.
|Proceedings||Time for conclusion of proceedings|
|Clauses 1 to 3, Schedule 1, Clauses 4 to 11||11.25 am on Tuesday 25th January|
|Clauses 12 to 15||5.30 pm on Tuesday 25th January|
|Clauses 16 to 19||9.15 am on Thursday 27th January|
|Clauses 20 to 25||11.25 am on Thursday 27th January|
|Remaining proceedings||5.30 pm on Thursday 27th January|
This Bill is not getting the level of detailed scrutiny by Parliament which it deserves.
Des Browne, the Minister for Citizenship and Immigration, is insisting that you can only have a single Identity Card, and that you have to choose which of your names becomes your "official" name e.g. Mrs. Cherie Blair, the wife of the Prime Minister or Ms. Cherie Booth QC, the leading barrister.
"Mr. Browne: This is off the top of my head and, if I am inaccurate, I will communicate with the Committee as I have done over the past 24 hours, but my understanding of the scheme is that people will be able to register under any particular identity. If for legitimate, not fraudulent, reasons they wish to use another name, then that fact could be registered and recorded on the register. We will not be issuing two cards to anyone. People will have to decide for the card. That is my immediate response. I will come back to the right hon. Gentleman. [Interruption.] As I stand here, inspiration arrives—in my head. Interestingly, what I have been given is what I just told the Committee. Both names will have to be registered, but individuals can choose which of the names goes on the card. It will be a matter of choice for the individual."
For a system which claims to be planning to use Multiple Biometric Identifiers to prevent misuse, what on earth can be the objection of having multiple spare copies of the same card, and copies in multiple legal names ? The Biometric Identifiers would, presumably, be the same, within the set tolerances, in each case, and allegedly the Card would be of no use to anyone else.
Either the Government still does not understand the Biometric Technology which it is promooting, or else it knows that it cannot actually be trusted for such a task.
If people are going to be able to use the ID Card without checking the Biometrics Identifiers, then what is the point of the expensive and intrusive technology in the first place ?