He was speaking in Lusaka, Zambia, at the commencement of the African Development Bank (AfDB) annual general meeting, with the theme “Energy and Climate Change”.
According to Osinbajo, 45 percent of those who lack access to power in the world are from Africa with “almost half of that African share are in Nigeria.”
“We are faced with a very dire situation, and in most of Africa, we simply don’t have power and without power, there is very little that can be done,” he stated.
He added: “For us, priority today is development, and we have to take development seriously. We think that renewable energy and all of the concern about climate change are important, but we must prioritise development.”
He noted that Nigeria is one of the major hydro-carbon enriched nations; the situation which, according to him, makes fossil fuel important.
The vice president described coal as equally important, saying Nigeria had to leverage all it could get from fossil fuel.
He also told the session that Nigeria has the capacity for solar energy and would tap into it, stating however that “We are dealing with a major developmental problem.”
He, however, explained the limitations of solar power, saying “We must bear in mind that for industries, the base load power is critical and is so much more difficult to get from solar power. So, we must understand that our immediate need requires the base load power that can move us forward quickly, and that we would get from fossil fuel, hydro power and coal fire plants.”