Former Vice President Osinbajo Takes Up Appointment As GEAPP, Global Energy Advisor

By Lateef Adegbite

Barely  two months after leaving office,  Yemi Osinbajo, a Professor and a Senior Advocate Of Nigeria, SAN, who incidentally was a former Nigerian Vice President  during ex-President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration,  has been appointed   by the Global Energy  Alliance  for People and Planet, GEAPP, funded by the Rockefeller And IKEA Foundations,  including the  Bezos Earth Fund as  a global Energy Advisor . The Rockefeller Foundation and partners   were said to have invested $10 billion to establish the GEAPP, in November, 2021.

 Simon Hartford, the GEAPP, Chief Executive Officer, CEO, was said to have broken the cheery news of the appointment of the former Nigerian President as the international agency Global Avisor at a press conference in Lagos, the nation’s commercial nerve centre on Tuesday, July 11, 2023.

Given an insider information of the global body, Hartford, had said that it is an alliance of philanthropic Organisations, governments in emerging and developed economies, technology, policy and financing partners.  He had said that the common mission  of the Organisation  is ‘’to enable  emerging economies  to shift to a clean energy , pro-growth model  that would  accelerate  universal energy  access  and inclusive  economic growth ,while supporting  the global Community  to meet critical climate goals during the next decade.

He had stated further that the aim of the GEAPP,   is to reduce   future  carbon emissions, expand clean energy  access to one billion  people all over the world  and create at least 150 million new.  Jobs. The international agency, according to Hartford, was   essentially established by the partners to build  the enabling environment , capacity  and market conditions  for private sector institutions, as well as serve as catalysts  new business models through innovation  and entrepreneurship to  deploy high –risk capital   to encourage  private sector solutions  and assist just transitions solutions.

Hartford: CEO, GEAPP

In breaking the news of the  appointment of Osinbajo as the new  GEAPP, global energy Advisor, last Tuesday,  Hartford had  described   the Nigerian born  Professor of Law  as  ‘’a respected  role model  of public service  at the fore front  of policy  formulation  and implementation  on crucial  developmental  issues  related to national planning,  climate change , enabling business  and investment environment , governance  and social investment’’.

 There is no gain saying the fact that the  Leadership of the GEAPPP,  may have been following  closely the steps taken by the  Nigerian former Vice President  since   2021, when he had  advocated the use of Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG,  as transition  fuel for developing  economies, in Dubai, United Arab Emirate, UAE, during  a week-long  forum  of World  LPG Association , WLPGA.

  The then Nigerian Vice President who was worried  that a growing number of developed economies have restricted public investment in fossil fuels, including natural gas,  had  said that’’ it was not good enough and  that the policy needed to be reversed.

He  may have taken advantage of the WLPGA, forum,  to make  his position clear on’’the fight against climate change , a global transition   away  from  carbon- based fuels must account  for the economic  differences  between countries and consequently  allow  for multiple  pathways  to achieve the net-zero emissions.

 He had argued  that the world  should  not  have ‘’ to choose between  energy poverty countries   and climate change  as this  could only  be ‘’addressed  with both  natural gas and LPG,  as transition fuels alongside other renewable energy  resources’’.

Osinbajo may have alluded to the fact that Nigeria, as one of the emerging economies   with a proven gas reserves   of  about 206.53 trillion  cubic  feet , worth about $803.4 trillion and an additional  66 TCF,  to be proven, an indications that the country has the most extensive gas resources in the African Continent, thus  makes a good   sense  from the point of view of balancing  energy security  with environmental sustainability ‘’to  use  the LPG as a transition fuel’’.  

The Professor of Law, was said to have  explained the imperative  for ‘’the global community  to  balance  concerted efforts  at addressing global  climate crisis with  energy-poverty issues in developing economies  aside from the climate  crisis. He was said to have  revealed at the last Dubai, WLPA,  forum  that  the Nigerian government  has established  a 20  million gas cylinder  scheme, stressing that five to 10  million of these   had  introduced in 12 pilot states in 2022.

  He was said to have further revealed at the Dubai, WLPGA, forum, that the t Nigerian government have also established an LPG, Energy Fund in the order of $50 million in the first phase of the LPG Scheme, in partnership with African Export, Import Afrexim bank.

This may have enthused the officials of the WLPA, at the forum, who were said to have started making moves to draw him closer to the international agency to be part of it to benefit from his expertise to solve the world   existential  climate crisis and  reduce the  emissions  in large, of the  advanced  economies .

This may have informed why Hartford, the GEAPP, CEO,   had asserted  that   his ‘’professional  expertise  and ledership , alongside  his  broad  global network  and relationships with governments  will be ‘’a valuable catalyst  in their mission  for affordable  access to  clean energy  and a just transition  for all’’.  

There is no gain saying the fact   that Leadership of the international agency from the on- set were said to have recognized the need to adopt a new approach   that would create a major change in the world climate crisis.  They may have alluded to such multiple players like the governments, investors, innovators, power companies and Philanthropy.    

 Recall that the GEAPP, CEO, had said that the appointment of the  former Nigeria Vice President  as the international agency, global  Energy   Advisor, will assist  it  in actualising its mission of ‘’accelerating  clean energy  deployment  in developing countries in the African Continent, Latin America  and the Caribean.

 Hartford who had broken the cherry news of the former Nigerian Vice President’s appointment  as the GEAPP’s global energy Advisor had said  that going by his mandate  he  will also support the global body’s   partnership  with governments ‘’to  enhance  the enabling  environment  and delivering the effectiveness  to unlock  faster  and greater artificial flows  into the clean energy sector’’.He did not stop there. 

He had said that he will also continue to do his job as a leading advocate for just transitions of LPG, in the developing economies.

Many believe  that  the appointment  Prof. Osinbajo as   the GEAPP  global energy Advisor,  underlines its commitment   to partnering  with governments  and communities across the African Continent,  Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean  to the  transition  to clean energy systems  that are driving the world economic growth , generating jobs  and sustainable livelihoods and helping  to meet  the urgent climate goals in the next decade.

An elated Osibanjo, who could not hide his feelings about the international appointment had said that it was unexpected.  It was not surprising why he had seen the appointment   ‘’to join the movement for green energy access as an honour’’. .

 He is optimistic  that the  GEAPP’s collaborative  model,,  sense of urgency,  and  focus on unblocking  systematic climate  change  as well as aligned  with the ambitions  of emerging  economies  as thy seek  a greener future for their citizens  will change the global economy

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