The sitting of members of the Ondo State House of Assembly was, on Thursday, called off, as a result of the dilapidated condition of the Assembly building.
It was gathered that a big snake fell from the ceiling of the chamber on Wednesday while the lawmakers were about to start legislative business.
A source said on sighting the snake, the lawmakers hurriedly rushed out of the chamber.
The source said, “The Speaker, Mr Bamidele Oloyeloogun, and other lawmakers had proceedings sitting on Thursday, when the ceiling directly on top of his seat caved in and almost fell on the Speaker’s head.
“The weak ceiling also fell on the seat of the parliamentary workers at the Assembly who sat in front of the Speaker.”
According to another source, out of fear that another snake might fall into the chamber, the Assembly ended the session abruptly and adjourned its sitting indefinitely until repairs would be carried out on the Assembly complex.
Confirming the development, the Chairman of the House Committee on Information, Mr Gbenga Omole, lamented that the Assembly complex was dilapidated, which gave room for reptiles and termites to invade in the chamber.
He also confirmed that the complex was in a dilapidated state and needed urgent repairs, but noted that the Assembly did not have the financial capacity to carry out the repairs.
Omole stated, “Yesterday (Wednesday), when we were about to enter into plenary, a big snake ran out of the chamber, which disrupted our sitting, and we had to hurriedly leave the chamber.
“We were about to sit again today (Thursday) when the ceiling caved in directly where Mr Speaker was sitting; we were agitated and when we looked around, we saw the damage that termite had done to most of the wood work in the chamber.
“At that point, we had to adjourn the sitting. The chamber is no longer safe for legislative business and because of that, we decided to adjourn indefinitely. The House will be going on an indefinite recess.
“We need to intimate the state governor of this development and we have decided to meet him on this. Mr Governor is aware of the infrastructural decay here, because many things here are outdated and not too good for legislative business.
“As of now, the House has not been given the autonomy we are agitating for, because when this happens, we won’t need to consult the governor to fix things. You know how things are being run presently; every arm of government needs to look up to the executive to get things done.”
While appealing to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu to rescue the Assembly complex, Omole said there was a lot of legislative business before the Assembly, which needed urgent attention.
“When I said we are going on recess, we will continue to come to our offices but sitting in that chamber is what is not going to happen. We have written to Mr Governor for him to know what is happening here,” the Assembly’s spokesman added.
He stated that the snake was later killed but insisted that there were more reptiles in the roof of the chamber.
He also lamented that whenever it rains, the whole chamber would be flooded.