Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour popularly known as GRV is an activist, architect and politician. He is the 2023 Labour Party candidate contesting for the seat of the Governor of Lagos State. GRV is a scholar with lots of academic conquest.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour Early Life and Education
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour is from Lagos state. He was born on March 8 1983 to Barrister Olawale and Mrs. Nkechi Rhodes-Vivour. He comes from a long line of Barristers as both his father, grandfather and uncle are lawyers. His uncle Bode Rhodes-Vivour is the former justice of the supreme court of Nigeria. Gbadebo’s late grandfather Akinwunmi Rhodes-Vivour was also a judge. His great-grandfather Steven Bankole Rhodes is the second ever indigenous judge appointed in Nigeria.
GRV was born in Lagos Island and he grew up in Ikeja. He spent his early school education in Chrisland Primary and Secondary School. When he was in JSS3 he relocated to Paris where he attended Ecol Artive Berlin. It was here he finished his secondary school education.
For his higher institution, he attended University of Nottingham where he got a bachelor’s degree in architecture. He went further to acquire a master’s degree in the same field from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During his stay at MIT he collaborated with the American and Chinese governments during the reconstruction of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina and the Beijing Olympics, respectively.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour returned to Nigeria after his studies to partake in the National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) in 2008. After his service year in 2009 he went on to study in the University of Lagos (UNILAG) where he got his second master’s degree in Research and Public Policy.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour’s Career
In the beginning of his career GRV worked for some of the top architectural firms. He worked with Franklin Ellis Architects when he was in the UK. After his return to Nigeria he worked with Consultants Collaborative Partnership (CCP) and Patrick Waheed Consultants. His work history with these companies is commendable.
He later went on to establish his own company which aim was to address the housing crisis in Nigeria by using creative and unconventional construction techniques to build affordable housing in Nigeria. He is on the board of Alhuda Construction Nigeria and Delta International Commercial City Ltd. GRV is also the founder of Spatial Tectonics and serves.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour’s Personal Life
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour is married to Dr. Ifeyinwa Rhodes-Vivour (PhD.). She is the daughter of Mr. Augustine Aniebo from Umunze in Anambra State. Her father was the former military administrator to Kogi and Borno State. Dr Ifeyinwa is a molecular geneticist by profession and she got her degree from Oxford University UK.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour’s Activism
GRV is passionate about Nigerians and the issues that its citizens. He has spare headed some causes that affect the society. He is the convener of the civil society group, Nigerians Against GMO, an Anti-GMO advocacy group fighting against the proliferation of Genetically Modified Foods in Nigeria.
In 2015 he actively took a stand against potentially harmful GMOs despite international pressure to make sure Nigerian agriculture and environments are preserved & they aren’t pressured to use harmful produce.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour in 2017 alongside Nnimmo Bassey, led a 2,000-man march to the Senate to lend a voice in the fight against environmental degradation. He has actively spoken out about the thuggery that thrives in Lagos because of lack of empowerment of the youths.
He has also campaigned for the restoration of history in the school curriculum. GRV has clamored for affordable housing and the need to transform Lagos to a cosmopolitan city.
GRV collaborated with WellaHealth in 2022 to provide free health checks and insurance for 1 million people in Lagos who have their Voter’s card. This was in commemoration of World Malaria Day. His aim was to encourage people to get their Voter’s card to enable them vote in upcoming elections.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour also participated in the #EndSARS protest which took place nationwide in 2020. He joined the large population of youths who came out carrying placards calling for the end to police brutality.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour’s Political Career
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour first dived into politics in 2017 when he contested for the position of the Local Government Chairman in Ikeja under KOWA party. His decision to contest under this party was due to godfatherism which he claimed was absent in the party. He lost the election to the incumbent chairman from APC.
In 2019 he again contested for the senate seat to represent Lagos west under the PDP. Part of his campaign manifesto then was to revamp the infrastructure within the district. He also spoke out against the incumbent then who he said was an absentee senator.
After the elections was concluded he came out second, scoring 243,516 votes. The incumbent Adeola ‘Yayi’ Olamilekanola, who contested under APC party won the election with 323,817. GRV contested the election result in court, citing electoral violence and disruptions as reasons why the result should not be valid. The court however ruled in the favour of Adeola stating that the election decision should be upheld.
GRV’s political ambition didn’t end there as on the 10th of August 2022 he was declared the Labour party gubernatorial candidate for the 2023 Lagos State gubernatorial election. He won the primaries which was contested to decide the candidate representing the party. Gbadebo defeated chieftain Moshood Salvador who got 102 votes. He got 111 votes to appear as the party flag bearer.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour had initially shown interest to contest for the position of the Governor of Lagos State under PDP but had pulled out just before the primaries was held.
The Governorship and state house of Assembly election which will decide GRV’S political aspiration will take place on the 18 March 2023.