Natasha Akpoti Biography
Natasha Uduaghan Akpoti was born on December 9, 1979. She is the second child among four siblings and is the only daughter of a Nigerian father and a Ukrainian mother. Her mother, Ludmila Kravchenk, hails from Rakitna in the Chernivtsi region of Ukraine, while her father, Dr. Jimoh Abdul Akpoti, comes from Obeiba-Ihima in Kogi State.
She spent her early years in Ihima, Okene Local Government. Her father passed away in 1998, and the family had to move. She attended the University of Abuja from 2000 to 2004 and earned a Bachelor of Laws degree. After graduating from the Nigerian Law School in Abuja in 2005, she was admitted to the Nigerian bar.
In 2011, she furthered her education at the University of Dundee, where she obtained a Master of Laws degree in 2012. She also holds a Master of Business Administration in Oil & Gas Management from the University of Dundee.
Natasha Akpoti Personal Details
- Name: Natasha Hadiza Akpoti
- D.O.B: 9 December 1979 (age 43)
- Nationality: Nigerian
- Education: University of Abuja, University of Dundee
- Occupation(s): Barrister, politician
- Political party: People Democratic Party
- Website: natashaakpoti.com
Natasha Akpoti Career
After finishing her studies at the Nigerian Law School, she worked as a legal counsel at Brass NLG from 2007 to 2010. In 2015, she established the Builders Hub Impact Investment Program (BHIIP).
She gained national recognition when she presented an investigative report to the National Assembly on March 1, 2018, highlighting corrupt activities related to the Ajaokuta steel mill. Her report revealed the ongoing misuse of government funds and corruption since the steel mill’s initial construction. Despite numerous efforts to make the mill operational, it remained inactive.
The Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development opposed her report and accused Akpoti of providing false information to the House of Representatives. An association of small-scale steel dealers also claimed that Akpoti was involved in a campaign to discredit the government and benefit certain corporate interests. A High Court in Abuja ruled that the publisher of Authority newspaper, Ifeanyi Uba, and Williams Orji had to pay Natasha Akpoti ten million naira in damages for their defamatory publication about her.
In 2018, she announced her desire to run for the position of Senator representing Kogi Central in the Nigerian Senate as a candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP). On May 25, 2022, Natasha won the PDP’s primary elections for the 2023 Kogi Central Senatorial Elections. She was set to compete against Abubakar Ohere, who secured the APC ticket.
In February 2023, shortly before the senatorial elections, there were allegations that the Kogi State government, led by Yahaya Bello, dug up sections of the road leading to her senatorial district. The government claimed that these excavations were carried out to prevent access by criminals who had been using the route for unlawful activities.
During the elections, she ran for the senatorial seat under the PDP and received 52,132 votes, while Sadiku-Ohere of the APC received 51,763 votes. She lost to her opponent by a margin of 369 votes.
Appeal Court affirms Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan as Kogi senator
The Court of Appeal in Abuja, on October 31, confirmed that Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) rightfully won the Kogi Central Senatorial election held on February 25. This decision was made as the three-member tribunal denied the appeal filed by Abubakar Sadiku-Ohere, a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC). The court upheld the ruling of the Kogi National and State Assemblies Tribunal.
The court found the arguments put forth by Joshua Usman, a senior advocate representing Akpoti-Uduaghan, to be well-founded. Consequently, the Court of Appeal panel, led by Hamma Barka, declared that Akpoti-Uduaghan, who secured the majority of valid votes in the election, was indeed the winner of the Kogi Central Senatorial District poll.
Moreover, the appellate court ordered Sadiku-Ohere to pay Akpoti-Uduaghan N500,000 as reimbursement for the cost of the petition.
The Election Petition Tribunal in Lokoja, Kogi, had earlier declared Akpoti-Uduaghan the victor of the senatorial election held on February 25, with 54,064 votes, defeating her closest rival from the All Progressives Congress (APC), Sadiku-Ohere, who had 51,291 votes. This judgment was unanimous among the three members of the panel.
The tribunal also uncovered discrepancies, including inflated results in favor of the APC in nine polling units within the Ajaokuta Local Government Area and intentionally reduced results in Akpoti-Uduaghan’s favor in certain areas. Furthermore, the tribunal noted that results were intentionally omitted from three other polling units.
Initially, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared Sadiku-Ohere as the winner of the Kogi Central Senatorial election on February 28. Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan faced several challenges during the election, including road obstructions orchestrated by Governor Yahaya Bello of the APC. Akpoti-Uduaghan also accused the APC of deploying individuals in military attire to disrupt polling units in her district.
Sage is a financial/consumer journalist and senior editor, personal finance, of TrendsHQ. EXPERTISE: Personal Finance, Careers, Jobs, Scholarships, and Entertainment.