The group's chief executive, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari, lamented on Tuesday that electricity remains a luxury and an exclusive reserve of the wealthy.
The head of the state-owned oil company said many Nigerians still found it difficult to afford a day's meal without talking about electricity.
Kyari spoke at the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit in Abuja.
The summit with: Expanding the circle of integration: technology, knowledge, sustainability partnership, as a theme enabled the signing of a $ 1.1 million grant between the country and the United States Agency for Trade and Development (USTDA) ) as co-financing of the Abuja Independent Food Project (IPP).
Kyari said the government needs to tackle the power problem before it can turn to renewable energy.
“For this country and for many of us in sub-Saharan Africa, what concerns us today are in fact the meals of today. Many people cannot afford one meal a day. And of course, electricity is largely a luxury; it's only for the elite, like all of us here.
“It is the dream of many to have the passage of my neighbor at their place. When you say, "don't use fossil fuels", but you haven't offered any alternatives. The world has not looked at their situation. The world has not recognized that there is abject poverty in communities.
“We have to solve the electricity problem so that we can talk about renewable energy in the future and reduce the use of fossil fuels which have a high impact on the environment.
We know there is an energy transition around the world. Over time, there will be less dependence on fossil fuels, ”said Kyari.
Kyari also said that gas remains the cheapest source of energy and that efforts must be made to stop its flaring in the country.
"We have an abundance of gas, we need to create infrastructure that will help create gas for power generation.
"We need power to create jobs and we need to create prosperity so that we can have peace in our country.
"We are grateful for this grant," he said.
USTDA Director Thomas Hardy said the grant was another demonstration of the United States' commitment to developing infrastructure around the world.
He said the grant would be used for the feasibility study of the PPI and other infrastructure development projects in the energy sector