Egbaland Elects New Apena: Bankole, Oluwo of Iporo To Assume Statutory Roles

…Bankole Vows to Enrich Tradition and Governance

Daud Olatunji 

In a momentous decision guided by tradition and unity, the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Michael Gbadebo, announced the election of a new Apena Egba, with Chief Alani Olayiwola Bankole emerging as the Apena-Elect.

The choice came after months of mourning following the passing of the previous Apena and extensive consultations among the kingmakers from Itoku and Iporo.

The Alake revealed that the position of Apena Egba holds great significance, as it falls under the category of statutory part 2 chiefs, with responsibilities akin to that of part 2 Obas in the region.

The Apena Egba represents a vital link in the cultural and administrative fabric of Egbaland.

Nine esteemed kingmakers, comprising the six most senior Chiefs from the Ognoni side and the four most senior Chiefs from the Olorogun side, convened to make this important decision.

It is noteworthy that it’s uncommon to assemble all nine kingmakers, emphasizing the solemnity of the occasion.

The selection process was conducted with the utmost transparency and consensus, as Chief Alani Olayiwola Bankole was nominated without any objections.

The Alake explained, “The Apena-Elect of Egbaland is a statutory chief, commonly referred to as Ajoba Ma dade, sharing the same status as part 2 Obas.

Though they do not wear crowns, they each possess an umbrella symbolizing their authority.

However, they are not permitted to use it when the Alake is present. Similar to Obas, they receive salaries and allowances befitting their role.”

This historic decision showcases Egbaland’s commitment to preserving tradition while fostering development, harmony, and peace. It also highlights the region’s unique status, as it is not the only Western region with statutory chiefs.

The final step in confirming Chief Alani Olayiwola Bankole as the Apena-Elect of Egbaland awaits the approval of the governor-in-council, given the statutory nature of the position. Once confirmed, Chief Bankole will assume his role as Apena Egba, poised to promote the well-being of Iporo and contribute to the greater peace, harmony, and development of Egbaland.

The selection of the Oluwo of Iporo as the next Apena Egba signals a promising future for the region, and it is a testament to the enduring traditions and values upheld by the people of Egbaland.

…. Bankole  Vows to Enrich Tradition and Governance

In a momentous announcement, Chief Alani Bankole has taken up the esteemed position of Apena Egba, marking a significant return to the traditional heart of Egbaland.

 His appointment carries a deep historical resonance, as he proudly revealed that his great-grandfather was the first to hold this position in 1898 under Oba Oshikalu.

Chief Bankole’s lineage in service to Egbaland did not end there. Following Oba Oshikalu’s reign, he worked closely with Gbadebo, the first Alake after ascending to the role of Apena. 

When Oba Oshikalu passed away, Chief Bankole continued his service alongside the Alake of that time until 1919, leaving an indelible mark on the region’s traditions.

Remarkably, in the year 2000, Chief Bankole was invited to assume the position of Apena by the late Alake, Oba Onipede. However, he initially declined due to his belief that the role was meant for others, like the immediate past Agbero, Chief Coker.

Chief Bankole recounted his initial reluctance, stating, “I thought that was the end.” He refused the opportunity because he wasn’t ready to wish his younger brother’s demise to take the position.

Despite his reservations and his perception of age, Chief Bankole eventually accepted the role after the recent passing of the Alake. He expressed surprise at the turn of events but embraced the honor and responsibility it entailed.

With 52 years of experience within the palace, Chief Bankole brings a wealth of traditional knowledge and political acumen to his new role. He acknowledged his transition from grassroots activities to a position of greater influence, emphasizing his readiness to serve Egbaland diligently.

Chief Alani Bankole’s legacy in Egbaland is well-established, and his appointment as Apena Egba promises to enrich the traditions and governance of this historic region. His dedication to the culture and his commitment to excellence leave Egbaland with high expectations for the future.


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