Barely 14 months after the former Speaker of House of Representatives, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, left office, he has explained the reason why he kept mum on national issues, saying he preferred to remain silent so as to ‘live long’.
Bankole, who paid a visit to the Matriarch of the Awolowo family, Chief H.I.D Awolowo, in her Ikenne home, yesterday, met secretly with her for 30 minutes. He, however, declined comments when he was approached by newsmen who got the hint of his visit to Awolowo.
The former Speaker, who was clad in white Kaftan, white cap and black sandals, drove himself to Awolowo’s residence at 1. 18 p.m. He was received by Mama Awolowo in company of her daughter, Dr. Tokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu. He later went into a secret meeting that lasted about 30 minutes with the her.
Vanguard gathered that the meeting might not be unconnected with the issues of unity among the Yoruba and the alleged marginalisation of the race by the President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.
The meeting also came five days after a meeting was held under the aegis of Yoruba Unity Forum, YUF, at the same place where issues bordering on the relegation of the race in the scheme of things in the country, among other things, were discussed.
Before the meeting, Bankole, who came with few security personnel in a three-car convoy, had told newsmen that he preferred to remain silent on state and national issues because he wanted to live long.
Bankole, who spoke in Yoruba, said “I did not run away; you know since I left office, I have not said a word. I prefer it to remain so. “I will continue watching from a distance, I don’t want to dabble into what is happening because, I want to live long.”
Attempts made by journalists after Bankole stepped out of the reception room where he held the meeting with Awolowo, to disclose why he was in Ikenne failed, as he declined comments but continue laughing until he drove out of the Awolowo’s compound.