55th Birthday Exclusive | I Have My Enemies To Thank Most @ 55 – IYALODE ADUNNI BANKOLE

The Iyalode Adunni Bankole with General Olusegun Obasanjo
at an earlier visit to her Jajo Praise Court home.

Nigerian high society woman and one
of the most influential women in the Lagos and Ogun state social circle, Chief Mrs. Adunni Bankole clocked 55 on
Saturday March 29th, the same day a national leader of Nigeria’s
major opposition party- All Progressive
(APC) Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was equally celebrating

While people from all walks of life gathered at the Victoria Island,
Lagos-South West Nigeria based Eko Hotel
and suites
in honor of the veteran politician:  Jajo, a
community in Gberigbe area of Ikorodu a suburb in Lagos  witnessed the surge of dignitaries from all
walks of life who stormed the Praise
residence of Chief Mrs. Adunni
to give her a befitting honor on the auspicious occasion of her 55th
birthday. It has always been the nature of the celebrant to throw her doors
open every year for the occasion. Two years ago, some top friends hosted her at
Protea Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos while
last year’s event had the famous Opebi-Ikeja based Chinese Restaurant as location. But this year, Mrs. Bankole who is a very sociable personality with a large heart
for everybody that comes her way, dragged the high and mighty to her deep-down
Lagos’ suburb, Ikorodu home and the big people never mind to yield her
invitation despite the long distance.  Leading the cream of high level personalities
who graced Adunni Bankole’s 55th is Chief (Mrs.) Bola Obasanjo, wife of former President and elder
statesman Chief Olusegun Obasanjo
who represented her husband at the occasion, while others like Senator Kola Ogunwale, Aare Remi Bakare and a host of other
very important Nigerian politicians and business men and women gathered for a
soiree of praise worship, singing, eating and merry making with one of the most
influential woman in Yoruba land who is also the Iyalode of Gbagura land in Abeokuta, Yeye Asoludero of Jajo land in Ikorodu and Yeye Mokun of Oke-Odan in Egba
kingdom. The celebrant who had a
crowd of dignitaries from Lagos, Ogun states in south west Nigeria and Abuja,
the Nigerian seat of political power storming her modest apartment tagged “Praise Court” was indeed full of
praises to God for giving her another year and as well thanked those who found
time to abandon their activities for her birthday celebration despite the
distance of her new home. Chief (Mrs.)
who is also a United Nations
Peace Ambassador
asabeafrika what life meant to her at 55 and why she needed to thank her
enemies for all the wrongs that eventually brought her to the right place.  It is an interesting encounter that can only
happen on your Africa’s number 1 celebrity encounter blog—asabeafrika. Enjoy the excerpts.    
The GDA with the Iyalode Adunni Bankole and
a guest inside her spectacular bedroom

Women leaders in Jajo community shares in Iyalode’s hapiness
‘We share in your joy’ Jajo Community women seems to
say as they danced with the Iyalode
Feelings @ 55
 The Iyalode opened up to asabeafrika
on how she feels at 55 and why God is due for all Glory in her life.  “At 55 I feel happy and grateful to God. God
remains ever faithful in my life; I feel like a new person. I feel like a new
being, I feel a rebound, I feel a re-birth, I feel overwhelmed. I am happy, I
am joyful, I am thankful to God for his mercy upon my life. I don’t think I
feel the impact of age on me, rather I feel a renewed strength that radiates
within me. I am proud of what God has done for me in the last 55 years of my
life on earth; all glory is returned to Him. He remains the Alpha-et-Omega, the author and finisher
of my faith. Without Him, I don’t think I will be standing here hosting my
loved ones today. I am perpetually grateful to Jehovah God Almighty”
The Nigerian Police also shared in Iyalode’s 55th birthday
happiness as officers joined her in cutting the cake
A woman of all people
Ikorodu and the crowd of guests
The celebrant dances as her
body guard looks on
 Despite the very far
distance of her new abode in Ikorodu which is like 30 kilometers to the main
city of Lagos, dignitaries still found their ways down to celebrate with Mrs.
Bankole, asabeafrika wanted to know how it makes her feel? “It makes me
feel good; it makes me feel happy and I feel wanted, I feel loved, I feel my
life depends on people. Without people I am nobody and I just think the only
thing for me is just to be thanking God. God has remained so faithful to me in
every phase of my life. Like I said initially, He has remained the ultimate
author and finisher of my faith. Without Him, nothing would have been possible.
Today is a day of celebrating God in the life of Mrs. Adunni Bankole and the
celebration of God’s people in my life. I am very grateful to everyone that did
their best to reach here”
Celebrity women cutting cake with Mrs. Bankole as she holds Tessy Yembra’s grand son, Damilola
WalkTall Tasty Foods CEO, Lola Ajala (m) with
other friends of Iyalode Adunni Bankole
Me, Bola Tinubu and Birthday
blog had gone ahead to ask her how she feels with the grace of sharing the same
birthday with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu the national leader of the major
Nigerian opposition party, APC Well and the Iyalode had this to say  “I give glory to God that I share a birthday
with someone of such status and social pedigree. I see Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as my brother and we celebrate birthday
together every year. People divide themselves between both of us, we have some
common friends. I feel happy, I am very grateful to God for what He has done
for me and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu
because it is only by God’s grace can a man or a woman acquire such a pedigree
in the comity of men. I think God has been kind to both of us in so many ways
and it is equally worth celebrating”
Captain S.A Aluko with star singer and OAP, Bose Olubo
Chief (Mrs) Adunni Bankole with a couple who came to felicitate with her
Tinubu, Politics and me
The Iyalode of Gbagura land getting
birthday wishes via Telephone
weather she has a relationship with the national leader of the opposition
party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu despite their political differences in terms
of party (Iyalode Bankole is of the PDP stock), she answered thus “The truth of
the matter is that I have a relationship with the person of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed
Tinubu, I call him my brother but it doesn’t cross back with politics. He
(Tinubu) is my brother as a person. He is someone I believe in, he is someone I
have grown to like; he is someone I have grown to respect. His daughter is like
a daughter to me she is a very fantastic lady and very disciplined. Both Shade
(Tinubu) and her husband, Oye are all my children. His wife is equally a person
I respect so much, that is Senator Remi Tinubu. I am so in love with the family
and I think I enjoy a reasonable level of friendship with them but it doesn’t
cross political bars deliberately”.

Sacrificing Ikeja for Ikorodu and
social life
Chief Mrs Bankole with star actor
Muka Ray who performed at the event.
Chief Mrs Adunni Bankole with
 first daughter, Toyin Bankole
aka Mama Sultan
very outspoken lady who left her Ikeja matrimonial apartment two years ago and
relocated to Ikorodu with a pomp celebration of the opening of her new home, Praise
which had former President Olusegun Obasanjo as the
Chief Launcher and Special Guest of Honor must have been affected with the
decision one way or the other especially as related to her social life. Hear
what she said to that “I have come to see this place like home and there is a
popular Yoruba saying that “Eni ta o fe ni ile e jin” (It is some that is
unloved that his or her house is far). I always find myself in the midst of
people, people don’t mind what it takes to come and see me here. People come
around to consult, to relate with me and to brief me on general issues of life
and governance. It is a very fantastic environment full of vegetation and good
living. It is okay, it is a perfect abode for someone that is nature conscious.
am trying to maneuver and manage my life around it (New abode). Even at such,
my social outings are like duty calls not like I want to socialize. They could
say ‘come and be chairman of this, come and be chairman of that’ and you know I
pick my events. Some people think I go out a lot but I am choosy about where I
go to and I have never spent more than an hour at any function, deliberately.  So, coming down to stay in Ikorodu has not
affected my social life in any way .I
don’t miss anything about Ikeja, I have not missed anything about Oregun (Her
former abode) anything at all. At this age of my life, health wise, I think it
is good to leave close to nature. I enjoy the fresh air here and the
Me and politics
Chief (Mrs.) Adunni Bankole go into
politics and how far is she prepared for it? “I have always been a politician,
I am a King Maker, I stay in the background deliberately.  I do a lot of things on the surface but you
will never see me physically.  But if I
am called to come and take a higher responsibility who am I to say no? But I will
wait for the call; I will not just go into politics. Initially when I tried
doing that sometimes back, it wasn’t easy going into it; I couldn’t manage it
with my family life. So, I had to stay back till after my child rearing period
was over. But people call me for things that borders on human and social
development. You know I once served on the board of Ogun state pharmaceuticals
before. I sat on one or two other boards before our tenure expired but for now
I am just waiting. I have political mentors; when they tell me to go, I will
go. When they ask me to stop, I will stop. So, when they invite me, I will also
inform my family and whatever my family wants me to do, I will do. It also
depends on what my family wants for me”.
The Celebrant cutting the cake with guests including her
first grand child, Sultan (2nd Right)
The Celebrant sorrounded by great friends inside her living room
Why I went to a bible school
Chief Mrs Adunni Bankole as a Lady Evangelist

at a strategic corner of her living room, you see the huge photograph of the Iyalode
in a seminary garb and you want to ask her why she went to the Bible College
and her response goes thus “Nothing big really, I went to the theological
school and graduated there two years ago. It is good to serve the Lord, it is a
major priority in our life and I just needed to know the Bible more.  I needed to relate the Bible to my everyday
life. So, I went for the General course and I went for the advance course. I am
not a pastor. Yes, I had a calling for many years but the truth is that what I
do socially now for the people is also a calling. It is a ministry; I am a
counselor. I am matron of about 52 organizations and that in itself is a
calling. So, I will say that is one way God has engaged me for the manifestation
of his glory in people’s lives. I am Christ ambassador in the midst of his

Special thanks to Everybody
 The celebrant later took
time to thank everybody who blocked the day for her birthday celebration  in Ikorodu and this is how she expressed her
gratitude “Yes, quite a lot of people came here today and it really makes me
feel humble. I am totally humble and grateful to God and His people. Chief
Mrs. Bola
Obasanjo came to represent His
Excellency President Olusegun Obasanjo
, Senator Kola Ogunwale was here. Senator Remi Bakare was here. Eritosin
the very gifted cleric-singer was here, Captain S.A know how to thank this very special woman. She has
never disappointed me for once. I wonder where Aluko came, City People publisher, Dr. Seye Kehinde came all the way from production, I am very
grateful to him. I thank him for his unique presence here; we have Princess
Toyin Kolade
and husband, I don’t know where she got the wisdom to be
this humble, her husband Prince Kayode
is such a very humble man too, Bose Olubo came and I don’t know how
to thank everybody that came. I specially thank my sister, Olori Eniola Atanda
Oyebi, the first lady of Arepo kingdom in Ogun state. She is a very great
person for spending the entire day with us here at Jajo. 
The Iyalode with some VIPs during her birthday
The Iyalode with some top Media Executive during an
early morning denominational service
Let me specially thank
Otunba Kayode Oke who flew in from
Abuja with retinue of aides, this man has given the most honorable sacrifice
today. He left Abuja around 2pm and he made it here by 5pm; the whole community
was agog to see him and I feel so blessed and totally humbled for his presence
here in my community. Like I said earlier, E
nit a o fe ni ile e jin
(It is someone you don’t love that his or her home
is far) Tessy Yembra was here with
her grandson and some friends, I thank her too and a lot of other people who
came this afternoon from all walks of life and others who are on their way down
here at the moment. I can’t thank all of them enough but I am sure my heart
blesses them all. I want to thank every one of them for the motivation I had; I
have kept going because people want me to keep going; and I have gone this far
because people believe in me. I have a lot of adversaries after me and
detractors but I thank them more than my friends because they got me where I am
today. I want to thank my children. I want to thank everybody that God has
surrounded me with. Thank you all”  
Iyalode’s friend of 40 years, Mrs. Victoria Abiodun Alabede
(Nee Alegbe) (L) with community women cutting cake with celebrant
Princess Tessy Alero Yembra (R) with friend, Mrs. Zang

Chief Adunni Bankole with one
of her grand daughters
soon on this blog “THE STORY OF HOW I
” by Iyalode Adunni Bankole.
Stay tuned & keep a date with www.asabeafrika.blogspot.com)