Former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, had occupied an enviable position in Nigeria’s political scene. He shot to national limelight at age 37, following the removal of the former Speaker, Patricia Etteh, over an alleged financial malfeasance.
However, in what may be described as an anti-climax, he lost the bid to return to the House in 2011. Thereafter, he contested for the number one job in Ogun State under the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP). But the ambition was truncated, as the party leaders seemed not to have any confidence in him. The popular choice was Gboyega Nasir Isiaka.
Faced with this reality, soft-spoken Bankole is said to making frantic efforts to re-launch his political career into reckoning. As a result, he is making some political moves, which many have described as ‘wrong moves.’
As the race for the 2019 general elections gathers momentum, his caucus has reportedly merged with that of Ladi Adebutu, another member of House of Representatives, who is said to be interested in the state top position. Adebutu is said to be in control of the structure that was once controlled by Buruji Kashamu. In the eyes of many, Bankole is desperately trying to save his political empire from total collapse.
The ex-speaker is the son of Chief Alani Bankole, the Seriki Jagunmolu of Egbaland, second republic politician and former national vice-chairman of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP). His mother, Atinuke Bankole, is the Ekerin Iyalode of Egbaland.