Review of gamebird licensing systems due to be published ‘shortly’

Earlier this month we blogged about the long-overdue commissioned review of gamebird licensing systems (see here). This review was first commissioned by former Environment Minister Paul Wheelhouse, way back in May 2014.

In January last year, in response to a Parliamentary Question from Claudia Beamish MSP (Scottish Labour), the then Environment Minister Dr Aileen McLeod said it would be published in Autumn 2016.

In August 2016, in response to another Parliamentary Question from Claudia Beamish MSP, Environment Cabinet Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said it would be published in Autumn 2016.

In November 2016, in response to a Parliamentary Question from Mark Ruskell MSP (Scottish Greens), Environment Cabinet Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said, “We anticipate that it will be published shortly“.

In January 2017, Mark Ruskell MSP asked again in a further Parliamentary Question when this review would be published.

Environment Cabinet Secretary Roseanna Cunningham has now responded (on 17 Jan 2017):

Scottish Natural Heritage will publish the commissioned research on gamebird licensing systems in selected other countries shortly“.

This stretching of the definition of ‘shortly’ is not uncommon in politics. In December 2016, John Finnie MSP (Scottish Greens), exasperated at the use of this term in relation to another Parliamentary Question, asked the Scottish Government: ‘…..what its definition is of the term ‘shortly’ and whether it will confirm by what date the announcement will be made‘ (Question S5W-05839).

Humza Yousef, Minister for Transport and the Islands responded almost one month later:

I shall reply to the member as soon as possible‘.

Photo of gamebirds being transported to a release pen, by RPUK


12 Responses to “Review of gamebird licensing systems due to be published ‘shortly’”

  1. 1 Peter Gordon
    January 22, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    Humza Yousef’s avoidance of the word “shortly” could be straight out of “Yes Minister” – it would be funnier as an oral response, though.

  2. 2 Tony Warburton MBE
    January 22, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    You just beat me to it Peter. Even though it is infuriating, I have to admit to hysterical laughter when I read Humza Yousef’s reply! It is so absurd, it has to go down as a ‘classic’ parliamentary response. So, as is my want, I looked up the word ‘shortly’ in my Oxford Dictionary. It means ‘soon’,’in a short time’. So then I looked at ‘soon’, and this means ‘after no long interval of time’, and ‘relatively early’. Next stop – ‘relatively’ – and here it gets REALLY hilarious. Amongst other things it means ‘not having absolute existence’! You couldn’t make it up could you? Sorry to take up valuable space RPUK, but I thought Humza Yousef might read this blog from time to time!

  3. January 22, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    Doesn’t make me laugh – it undermines the actual usefulness of parliament if there is no sanction for ignoring or endlessly delaying promises made.

  4. January 22, 2017 at 5:15 pm

    When can we have faith in the government…… shortly!

  5. January 22, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    The Spanish have the word for it…….
    Another saying is Mañana, mañana which means “later”. This later can mean a week later or two years later. It is very vague.

  6. 6 Stewart Love
    January 22, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    “Manana” or Shortly. I don’t think we have such a word in the Scottish/English language that conveys such a sense of urgency.

    • 7 Iain Gibson
      January 22, 2017 at 11:45 pm

      A minor correction – the Spanish word “mañana” does not mean later or shortly. It means tomorrow, alternatively “la mañana” which means the morning. “Mañana, mañana” means later. However it is mainly used ironically to imply never, which appears to be the most appropriate meaning in this case!

  7. January 23, 2017 at 9:54 am

    shortly means when, I effing well feel like it with the effing well, silent.

  8. 9 Tony Warburton MBE
    January 23, 2017 at 11:10 am

    Dave, in fairness I did say ‘hysterical’ laughter, not laughter “Ha ha”!

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