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A Nigerian woman has been handed a top role at the United Nations by the UN Secretary-General António Guterres.
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has announced the appointment of Damilola Ogunbiyi of Nigeria as his Special Representative for Sustainable Energy for All and Co-Chair of United Nations-Energy.
The Secretary-General also welcomes the announcement by the Administrative Board of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) that Ms. Ogunbiyi has been appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SEforALL.
Ms. Ogunbiyi succeeds Rachel Kyte of the United Kingdom as Special Representative, Co-Chair of United Nations-Energy, and CEO of SEforALL. The Secretary-General expresses his gratitude to Ms. Kyte for her dedication and commitment to the United Nations, her achievements in accelerating universal energy access, and her leadership in advancing sustainable energy transition in the context of the Paris Agreement.
Ms. Ogunbiyi brings extensive leadership experience and a track record of supporting energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa to these roles. She was the first woman to be appointed as Managing Director of the Nigerian Rural Electrification Agency. She is also responsible for implementing the Nigerian Off Grid Electrification Programme and successfully negotiating the Nigerian Electrification Project, to rapidly construct solar mini-grids and deploy solar home systems across Nigeria.
She also developed the Energizing Economics Initiative and Energizing Education Programme, which provide sustainable and affordable off grid power solutions. Before joining the Federal Government of Nigeria, Ms. Ogunbiyi was the first woman to be appointed as the General Manager of the Lagos State Electricity Board, which is responsible for public lighting, independent power projects, and energy development serving millions of people across the State. Prior to this, she consulted for the United Kingdom Department for International Development on public-private partnerships.
Ms. Ogunbiyi is a globally respected leader with a broad and diverse international network in the area of energy development, which includes key relationships with leading multilateral and bilateral partners and the private sector. She is also one of the Commissioners for the Global Commission to End Energy Poverty.
The announcement comes as the world is about to enter the final decade to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) – access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030. SEforALL is an international organization, headquartered in Vienna, Austria, that is dedicated to helping the world achieve SDG7 and Paris Agreement targets.
SEforALL continues to have close ties to the United Nations through an existing relationship agreement, partnerships with United Nations agencies and Ms. Ogunbiyi’s roles as Special Representative for Sustainable Energy for All and Co-Chair of United Nations-Energy.