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U.S. Vice President lauds Osinbajo’s leadership on climate change

U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris has commended Vice President Yemi Osinbajo for providing leadership on climate change.

Osinbajo Harris
U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris with Vice President of Nigeria, Yemi Osinbajo

Osinbajo is in Washington, U.S. to seek global partnerships and support for the recently inaugurated Nigeria’s Energy Transition Plan (ETP).

Osinbajo’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, in a statement on Saturday, September 3, 2022, in Abuja, said the duo met at the Ceremonial Office at the White House and made remarks to newsmen before the closed session where they discussed bilateral issues.

Harris expressed optimism on Nigeria’s ability to achieve the ambitious goals laid out in the plan.

She welcomed Nigeria’s ETP and applauded  Osinbajo’s extraordinary leadership.

“I congratulate you for your example on your ETP which I know pledges carbon neutral energy by 2060, an ambitious goal but important and by your leadership, I have no question that they will be achieved.”

On advocacy for a just energy transition, Harris observed that her Nigerian counterpart had been an extraordinary leader on the issue.

”I noticed this is something you feel very strongly about and you have been very adamant about the role Nigeria is playing in addressing this crisis that face us all,” she said.

 Harris also praised Nigeria’s leadership role in upholding democracy in West Africa and expressed hope that the general election on Feb. 2023 would  be peaceful and reflect the will of the people.

Osinbajo, while responding to welcoming remarks by Harris, said both countries needed further collaboration on global issues.

“We very strongly believe that we, in the coming years, will need to work together again on so many global challenges that are varied.

“And they come up very frequently now from promoting peace and security, to tackling global health issues and climate change and of course, economic adversity.”

On Nigeria’s ETP, Osinbajo said that the plan was important because the climate crisis for Nigeria was two existential issues.

“First, the crisis itself, second the energy poverty which is an issue for us in our part of the world.

“So, while we look forward to the 2060 carbon neutrality goal, we are also hoping that even within a shorter period by 2030, we will deal with the issue of energy poverty.

“We look forward to the coming years and months for even greater collaboration and stronger ties between our countries to create a fairer, more prosperous and perhaps a greener, also freer nation and nations and the world.”

He  commended the U.S. for its innovative approach to addressing climate change.

Osinbajo congratulated Harris on the Inflation Reduction Act, saying it was historic, especially for those who were  paying attention to all the issues of climate change.

He told his U.S. counterpart that Nigeria’s recently inaugurated ETP was the country’s Master Plan for addressing the issues of climate crisis and energy poverty.

Osinbajo disclosed that Nigeria would require investment support towards the implementation of ETP.

He referred  to his earlier meetings in the past few days in the US Capital at the World Bank Group, the US Treasury and the US Agency for International Development(USAID).

Osinbajo also took time to laud the long-standing cordial relations between Nigeria and U.S.

He said the U.S. had been a long-standing partner and friend of Nigeria and even as long ago as independence.

Osinbajo stated that the U.S had been a firm supporter of Nigeria’s aspirations, especially its economic and social development ambitions.

He appreciated the support Nigeria received from the U.S., especially in the fight against terrorism within the borders and in the Sahel and the timely donation of 4 million vaccines, to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.

”And that, of course, was extremely useful,” he said.

By Chijioke Okoronkwo

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