Dimeji Bankole’s father emerges Apena of Egbaland


Chief Suarau Alani Bankole, father of the former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, on Friday emerged the Apena – elect of Egbaland in Ogun State.

His emergence was announced on Friday by the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, at Ake palace in Abeokuta.

Oba Gbadebo said his emergence after unanimous voting by all the nine kingmakers followed demise of the former occupant of the seat.

According to him, the seat of Apena is statutory in Egbaland, saying the position is a part II Chief and the occupant draws salary and entitlements like other chiefs.

“We have nine kingmakers and the only person that was nominated is Chief Alani Bankole Layiwola. There was no objection from any of the kingmakers and when the time of voting came, they all voted for him.

“So, he stands as the Apena-elect of Egbaland. We are now going to await the approval of the governor,” he said.

Addressing newsmen after his emergence, Chief Bankole promised to bring his experience to bear in the new position.

Responding to questions on national issues, Bankole said democracy is not the best system of government for Nigeria.

Bankole opined that Nigeria must operate a system of government other than military rule.

He argued that such system of government must take into consideration the peculiarities of the Nigerian people and must be best suited to resolve the country’s challenges.

The octogenarian noted that Nigeria must build strong institutions that would support governance.

He said “I do not agree that democracy is the best for Nigeria. In Saudi Arabia there is no democracy, the people there are very happy they are making progress, they are satisfied, their resources are properly distributed.

“However, military government is not an alternative to democracy, but I think like the world that is changing, I think people should start to think about the best of government other than democracy, but definitely not autocracy.

“The only good thing about democracy is that the leaders can never be there forever.

“The way they practice democracy in America is different from the way they practice democracy in UK and the two are quite different from the way we practice it in Africa because there are institutions of checks and balances which are always in the constitutions of those countries.

“But in a place like Nigeria we have not developed enough to be able to build such institutions.”

Alake in his remarks restated the call for constitutional roles for traditional rulers, saying monarch cannot afford to be onlookers in the affairs of the country.

“If traditional rulers become onlookers there will be a lot of chaos all over the country. We are part and parcel of maintaining peace in the country and we must be seen to be performing that role,” Alake said.