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African Energy Chamber Mourns Barkindo


(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – African Energy Chamber (AEC) has commiserated with the family and friends of the late Secretary General of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Muhammad Sansui Barkindo.

Barkindo passed away on Tuesday July 5 in his home country of Nigeria at the age of 63.

The Chamber in a statement on Wednesday, said the AEC is deeply saddened by the passing of Barkindo, an oil industry veteran, African hero and close friend.

“The African Energy Chamber extends its deepest condolences to the family of His Excellency Muhammad Sansui Barkindo, an oil industry veteran who fought for the right to develop, he will be missed”, the statement said.

Describing the death of the OPEC secretary as an immeasurable loss, the Chamber said words cannot express the tragedy of the loss, adding that the legacy left behind by Barkindo will be remembered by the global energy community for years to come.

Executive Chairman of AEC, NJ Ayuk said Barkindo lived a life of loyalty, friendship and perseverance, adding that he will be remembered as the man who united producers, helped create OPEC and fought for alleviating energy poverty and strengthened Africa’s position as a global energy supplier.

“He will be greatly missed. H.E. Barkindo was our leader, our role model and our friend. The AEC is devastated at the news of his passing. In Africa, he will always be remembered as a patriot, an instrumental figure who fought for the continent’s right to develop our oil and gas.

“As we mourn the passing of Barkindo, the AEC urges every energy stakeholder to remember what our OPEC Secretary General fought for: the development of Africa and the world for the benefit of future generations”, he stressed.



With a career spanning four decades, Barkindo dedicated his life and career to growing the Nigerian, African and global oil and gas sectors. His journey with OPEC started in 1986 where is served as Nigeria’s delegation to the organization.

Thereafter, his role in the organization grew as he took on other positions including acting OPEC Secretary General in 2006, representing Nigeria on OPEC’s Board of Governors from 2009 to 2010 and finally appointed as Secretary General in 2016, re-appointed for a further three years in 2019.

Prior to his roles in OPEC, Barkindo was a leading figure in the Nigerian energy space, having served as advisor to former Minister of Petroleum Resources and OPEC Secretary General, H.E. Dr. Rilwanu Lukman KBE, Deputy Managing Director of Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas and Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

He had been a leader of Nigeria’s technical delegation to the UN climate change negotiations since 1991, served as chair of the Group of 77 and China at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and was elected to serve three terms as Vice President of the Conference of the Parties – COP13, COP14 and COP15.

Notably, his true achievements came in his tenure as Secretary General of OPEC. Representing the longest serving delegate to OPEC. He navigated through and oversaw some of the most turbulent periods in the history of the organization. This started with the creation of the OPEC+ coalition a few months after his appointment as head of the organization, with him ushering a new, unprecedented era for the organization and once-unimaginable partnerships with non-member countries including Russia.

In less than a year following his appointment, Barkindo took the organization to greater heights, uniting global energy producers in a feat of diplomacy.


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