Hoodlums took over the Ondo State House of Assembly on Friday following the removal from office of Speaker Bamidele Oloyelogun and his Deputy, Ogundeji Iroji.
The hoodlums humiliated lawmakers, staff and journalists as they had a field day in spite of the heavy presence of security personnel.
Oloyelogun, representing Ifedore Constituency, and Ogundeji, representing Odigbo Constituency II, were removed by two-third majority of the Assembly amid rancour.
The two lawmakers were said to have been impeached over alleged “gross misconduct and incompetence”.
Meanwhile, Olamide George, representing Akure North Constituency, was elected as the new Speaker and Abimbola Fajolu, representing Ile Oluji/Oke Igbo, as the new Deputy Speaker by that removed the two principal officers.
Fatai Olotu, a member of the group and representing the Akoko North East, told journalists that both men had been sworn in.
However, the impeached speaker, who later held a plenary with his group shortly after the hoodlums chased away the new faction, said he remained the speaker of the Assembly as their impeachment did not follow due process.
Oleyelogun urged his supporters and people of the state to remain calm and be law-abiding, insisting that the impeachment would not stand.
He said the newly elected speaker and 15 other members of the assembly had been suspended for ‘unruly conduct’ and that the assembly activities had been adjourned indefinitely.
However, the Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, has distanced himself from the removal of the Speaker and his Deputy.
Although fingers were pointed in the direction of the Governor and the leadership of the All Progressives Congress in the state, both of them have denied that they had anything to do with either the removal or the reprisal attacks by thugs on the lawmakers.
Speaking on the development, the Commissioner for Information, Yemi Olowolabi, said that the Governor had no hand in the crisis of the Assembly.
According to him, impeachment squabbles were not new at the house, adding that it was the business of the house to determine the tenure of its leaders.
“What the Governor does is to invite the warring parties and try to find amicable solutions to the crisis,” he said. “And that is what the governor has been doing and will do.”
Olowolable stated that the executive arm of government was not and would not be involved in the politics of impeachment of a speaker, adding that the allegations that it was involved was untrue.
The current crisis in the House may not be unconnected with the outcome of the APC primaries where only seven, including the impeached Speaker and his Deputy, out of the 18 party members, have tickets to contest the next assembly elections.