Bell Ribeiro-Addy

Bellavia Janet Ribeiro-Addy (born 1985) is a British Labour Party politician who has served as the Member of Parliament for Streatham since the 2019 general election.[1][2] Solidly on the left of the Party, she considers herself a "life-long socialist" and a feminist[3] and was briefly Shadow Minister of State for Immigration in 2020.

Bell Ribeiro-Addy

Shadow Minister of State for Immigration
In office
24 January 2020  9 April 2020
LeaderJeremy Corbyn
Preceded byAfzal Khan
Succeeded byHolly Lynch
Member of Parliament
for Streatham
Assumed office
12 December 2019
Preceded byChuka Umunna
Majority17,690 (31.3%)
Personal details
Bellavia Janet Ribeiro-Addy

1985 (age 3536)
Streatham, London
Political partyLabour
Alma materUniversity of Bradford (BSc)
Queen Mary University of London (MA)
BPP Law School (GDL)

Early life

Born and raised in Streatham, Ribeiro-Addy grew up in a working-class family on a council estate on Brixton Hill. She is Christian and of Ghanaian descent.[3][4][5]

Ribeiro-Addy was able to attend the independent Streatham and Clapham High School on a scholarship. She went on to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science with Ethics & Philosophy of Science from the University of Bradford in 2006. She then completed a Master of Arts in Medical Law & Ethics at Queen Mary University of London, awarded in 2007, and a Graduate Diploma in Law at BPP Law School, awarded in 2015.[6]

She was the National Black Students' Officer for the National Union of Students (NUS) from 2008 to 2010, national co-ordinator of the Student Assembly Against Racism, and the national convenor of the NUS' Anti-Racism/Anti-Fascism campaign.[7] In 2010, she and LGBT+ officer Daf Adley pushed the Durham Union Society to cancel a debate on multiculturalism, concerned for students' safety if far-right BNP MEP Andrew Brons were to speak on campus.[citation needed]

Political career

Before becoming an MP, Ribeiro-Addy was chief of staff to former Labour frontbencher Diane Abbott.[8] She has sat as a school governor at Saint Gabriel's College, Camberwell since 2018.

Ribeiro-Addy was elected as the Labour MP for Streatham in the 2019 general election with a majority of 17,690, reduced by over 8,000.

Ribeiro-Addy in her maiden speech called for some form of reparations to former colonial subjects.[9] In one of her first news interviews as an MP, Ribeiro-Addy called for the decriminalisation of homosexuality in Ghana, stating that "it is my duty to make sure all people are free, and not discriminated against."[10]

In January 2020, Ribeiro-Addy was appointed as Shadow Minister for Immigration, just weeks after her election as a member of parliament. She was not retained in the role following the election of Keir Starmer as Labour Leader.[11] She became the Co-chairperson of Labour's left-wing Socialist Campaign Group.

She has challenged the role of the media in devaluing black female MPs, particularly regarding BBC Parliament errors.[12] During the COVID-19 pandemic, Ribeiro-Addy called on the government to release people held in immigration detention centres.[13]


  1. "Streatham constituency results 2019: Labour's Bell Ribeiro-Addy wins". Evening Standard. 13 December 2019. Retrieved 13 December 2019.
  2. "Streatham election results in full: Labour's Bell Ribeiro-Addy gains seat". SW Londoner. 13 December 2019. Retrieved 13 December 2019.
  3. "Local left candidate squares off Nov. 2 in Streatham V. two councillors from Blairite-dominated Lambeth". Skwawkbox. 25 October 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  4. "UK elections: Two Ghanaian women win seats for Labour". The Ghana Report. 13 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  5. "Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP". OBV. Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  6. "International Women's Day- Bellavia Janet Ribeiro-Addy". Heart Streatham. Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  7. "Bellavia Ribeiro-Addy". The Guardian. 25 October 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  8. "Streatham election results: Ribeiro-Addy makes shocking N-word admission". South West Londoner. 1 December 2019. Retrieved 6 April 2020.
  9. Shah, Hasit. "What the UK owes in reparations". Quartz. Retrieved 2 January 2021.
  10. "Homosexuality: 'Allow people to do what they want' - British MP of Ghanaian descent". 2 January 2020.
  11. "Bell Ribeiro-Addy appointed as shadow immigration minister". Voice Online. 24 January 2020. Retrieved 28 February 2020.
  12. "Black MP caption mistakes 'show lack of respect'". BBC News. 4 February 2020. Retrieved 4 February 2020.
  13. Lizzie Dearden Home Affairs Correspondent @lizziedearden (1 March 2020). "Coronavirus: Immigration detainees must be released to stop spread of virus, Labour says". The Independent. Retrieved 19 March 2020.