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Ogun Assembly: Mace smashed, as two factions lay claim to speakership


There was commotion at the Ogun State House of Assembly, yesterday, after the mace, a symbol of authority of the House, was broken by aggrieved lawmakers obstructing the Speaker, Suraj Adekunbi, from announcing the suspension of four members.

Already two lawmakers, Suraj Adekunbi ane Remmy Hassan are laying claim to the speakership.

This was compounded by alleged possession of guns by some lawmakers prompting the security agents to thoroughly search some of the lawmakers, journalists and visitors to the chamber.

As if this was not enough, another Speaker, Remmy Hassan was purportedly elected by 14 lawmakers after the first rowdy plenary where four of them were suspended.

Trouble started few minutes after the commencement of the proceedings around 11a.m. when the Speaker announced the plan to sanction four members that allegedly disregarded the House rules at the last sitting.

According to Adekunbi, Remmy Hassan, Olufemi Akintan, Adija Adeleye-Oladapo and John Obafemi representing Odogbolu; Egbado North 11; Ifo 11 and Remo North constituencies consecutively  had been suspended for “various acts bordering on unparliamentary  behaviour and gross disrespect to the legislative institution.”

In an attempt to counter their suspension one of the affected lawmakers, Khadijat Adeleye-Oladapo rose, allegedly grabbed the mace placed before the Speaker and broke it.

She was subsequently joined by other aggrieved lawmakers numbering about 13 who then smashed the mace.

Adekunbi had called the majority leader of the House, Isreal Jolaosho, to move the motion for the suspension of the four lawmakers before the lawmakers broke the mace.

Announcing their suspension Adekunbi said: “Consequently, these Honourable members are not to be seen within the premises of the Ogun State House of Assembly henceforth.”

The House comprising 26 lawmakers has been polarised into two groups with both Adekunbi and Remmy Hassan leading the factions.

Attempt by the Speaker, to reconvene the House at 2:30pm was aborted as Remmy Hassan prevented the Speaker from seating, saying “Suraju has been suspended, he is no more our Speaker, I am the Speaker protem.”

Briefing after the commotion, Adekunbi explained that he tried to give all the lawmakers equal right during the plenary.

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