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Know Your Governor – Rhodes-Vivour, Sanwo-Olu, Jandor Battle For Lagos State




On Saturday, 11th of March, 2023, a large number of the 22 million Nigerians residing in Lagos will troop out to elect leaders who will govern the affairs of the State for the next four years.

Naija News reports that Lagos boasts of one of the largest economies in Africa with a Gross Domestic Product GDP) of $84 billion, comparable with Ghana’s $75 billion, Angola’s $70 billion, and Ethiopia’s $93 billion.

Nigeria’s commercial capital is the home to the headquarters of almost all conglomerates, and banks in the country are located in the State.

From an Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of N600 million in 1999, Lagos rakes in almost a trillion IGR annually.

To manage this strategically important state, three major contenders have indicated interest.

They are the incumbent, Babajide Sanwo-Olu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour of the Labour Party, and Abdulazeez Olajide Adeniran (Jandor) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Know your candidates…

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Olajide Adediran (JANDOR)

1. Abdul-Azeez Olajide Adediran, popularly known as Jandor

Born on 25 November 1977, Jandor is gunning for the governorship seat of Lagos under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). He came into the scene when the PDP in Lagos was largely fragmented. He graduated from the Polytechnic Ibadan with an HND. He later studied at Modul University, Vienna; the Howard University School of Business, Washington DC, USA; and Oxford University, Oxford, United Kingdom.

In 2011, he was posted as a journalist with Lagos Television to cover the Lagos Governor’s Office. Former Governor Babatunde Fashola was governor then. He resigned from Lagos Television and later established Core Media, supplying sound systems during major events. His closeness to the then Chairman Lagos Inland Revenue Service (LIRS), Tunde Fowler, boosted his income. He later established Core TV, which is now defunct. His leadership at Core TV was characterised by owing staff salaries until it eventually folded up.

While still in APC, he established the Lagos4Lagos movement. Jandor later defected to the PDP as he could not realize his ambition in APC. Through the influence of former President Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, he got the governorship slot of the PDP. He picked actress Funke Akindele as his running mate, further causing a divide amongst PDP leaders in the state.

Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour

2. Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour

Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, popularly known as GRV, Labour Party’s governorship candidate in Lagos, is an underdog going into Saturday’s governorship race. Born on 8 March 1983, Rhodes-Vivour has a bachelor degree in Architecture from University of Nottingham and a master degree in the same field from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He later attained a second master’s degree in Research and Public Policy; from the University of Lagos (UNILAG).

Rhodes-Vivour is from a family of lawyers. He is the son of Barrister Olawale and Mrs. Nkechi Rhodes-Vivour. A former justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Bode Rhodes-Vivour, is his uncle, while the late Judge Akinwunmi Rhodes-Vivour is his grandfather. He is the great-grandson of Steven Bankole Rhodes, the second-ever indigenous judge appointed in Nigeria.

GRV was in the PDP last year and later defected to the Labour Party after failing to clinch the governorship ticket.

Before venturing into politics, he worked with Franklin Ellis Architects when he was in the UK. On returning to Nigeria, he worked with SISA, Cliff Consulting, now called Building Partnership CCP, and Patrick Wayi.

Rhodes-Vivour contested the Ikeja Local Government Area chairmanship under the KOWA party in 2017 and lost to the APC candidate. In 2019, he contested for the senate seat to represent Lagos West under the PDP and lost to APC’s Senator Adeola ‘Yayi’ Olamilekan Solomon.

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Babajide Sanwo-Olu

3. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu is aspiring for a second term in office after piloting the affairs of Lagos State in the last four years.

Sanwo-Olu has a BSc in Surveying and an MBA from the University of Lagos. He is an alumnus of the John F. Kennedy School of Government, the London Business School, and the Lagos Business School. He is an associate member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM) and a fellow of the Nigeria Institute of Training and Development (NITAD).

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Before becoming governor, Sanwo-Olu has experience in the banking and managerial sectors. He has lots of experience in the public sector and was an insider in the formulation of a blueprint for the development of Lagos. In 2003, he was appointed a Special Adviser on Corporate Matters to the then-deputy governor of Lagos State, Femi Pedro. He was later made the acting Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget until 2007, when he was appointed as the Commissioner for Commerce and Industry by then-Governor, Bola Tinubu. After the General Elections of 2007, Sanwo-Olu was appointed Commissioner for Establishments, Training, and Pensions by the then Governor, Babatunde Fashola. Sanwo-Olu was made Managing Director/CEO of the Lagos State Development and Property Corporation (LSDPC) by former Governor Akinwunmi Ambode in 2016.