Kemi Badenoch Of Nigerian Heritage Gets UK Trade Secretary Job

Akinola Ajibola  
Updated September 7, 2022
An undated handout photograph released by the UK Parliament shows Conservative MP for Saffron Walden, Olukemi Badenoch, posing for an official portrait photograph at the Houses of Parliament in London. (Photo by Chris McAndrew / UK PARLIAMENT / AFP)


Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (UK), Liz Truss, has appointed Kemi Badenoch as the new Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade.

Ms Badenoch, who was born Olukemi Olufunto in Wimbledon, London to parents of Nigerian origin, is also the MP for Saffron Walden.

Her appointment comes hours after Truss assumed office as Britain’s third woman prime minister and new Leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party, taking over from Boris Johnson who held the position since July 2019.

The 42-year-old’s appointment was announced on the verified Twitter page for the office of the UK Prime Minister based at 10 Downing Street.


In her reaction, she promised to commence the process that would lead to the creation of more jobs and better economic opportunities for people across the UK.

Before her appointment as UK Secretary of State for International Trade, Badenoch served as British equalities minister during Johnson’s tenure.

She previously held roles as Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury and Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Education.


Badenoch is also a former Vice-Chair of the Conservative Party and former member of the Justice Select Committee. Prior to her election as a Member of Parliament, she was a Conservative member of the London Assembly, acting as the GLA Conservative’s spokesperson for the economy.

She was also in the race to succeed the former prime minister alongside Rishi Sunak, former chancellor; Sajid Javid, former health secretary; Ben Wallace, defence secretary; and Jeremy Hunt, former foreign secretary, among several others.

All the former contenders, however, lost the UK top job to 47-year-old Truss who has been the Member of Parliament for South West Norfolk since 2010.