Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, the governorship candidate of the Labour Party in Lagos has again condemned the claim that Lagos is a no man’s land.
In recent times, there have been arguments about the narrative on social media where many Nigerians air their opinions on the matter.
While many are pushing the narrative that Lagos has no original settlers, because it was formally a British Colony, others argued that the state belongs to the Yorubas, the ethnic group that occupies the south-west region of the country.
The argument is further driven by those who oppose Gbadebo’s governorship ambition over the claim that he can’t speak the Yoruba language because his mother is Igbo.
However, the governorship candidate while speaking on the ethnic politics being played in Lagos condemned the narrative, saying it is appalling.
He said some groups of people built Lagos to become what it is today, adding that the welcoming nature of the state was built by the Aworis, the Ogus and other groups.
“I’ve said it several times even on this show, the idea that someone would say Lagos is a no man’s land is appalling to me. There are people that built the idea, the culture of what Lagos is. The welcoming nature of the Aworis, the Ogus, even before the Oba of Benin sent the current royal family to Lagos, it was already a trading post, he said.
“The Tapa, the Nupe people were already here, they were mixing and there was a culture, and that culture is a welcoming one, a live and let live one. And that was one of the reasons why Nnamdi Azikiwe would have one of his allies in Adeniji Adele, you cannot question the pedigree of Adeniji Adele in Lagos state”, he added.
This is not the first time the governorship candidate would caution against the narrative. In a recent interview, he said, “You cannot say Lagos is a no man’s land because my great-great-grandfather lived there and built Lagos”.
Speaking on Arise TV on Thursday, March 16, 2023, Gbadebo dismissed the anti-Yoruba narrative peddled against him, saying he’s not worried about the ethnic card being played ahead of the March 18 governorship election.
“I would have been worried about the bigotry if the governors we’ve had were from Lagos. They are not from Lagos. I am not burdened when people try to bring ethnic bigotry. When I started to get worried was the fact that the state governor declined attending debates five times.
“I was worried because it implies that the people were not the ones that put him in that position. He believes that the political structure of his godfather was what put him in his position, now he is moving all over Lagos because he’s seen the force and the strength of the people”, he said.
Gbadebo emerged as the governorship candidate of the Labour Party in August 2022, after dumping the Peoples Democratic Party.