Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo died in Nigeria at the age of 63, the Vienna-based oil organisation said Wednesday.
Barkindo was visiting his home country Nigeria to attend an energy conference in the capital city of Abuja, according to an OPEC statement.
Mele Kyari, head of Nigeria’s National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), tweeted on Wednesday morning that Barkindo died at about 11 p.m. (2200 GMT) on Tuesday.
Barkindo’s death is “certainly a great loss to his immediate family, the NNPC, our country Nigeria, the OPEC and the global energy community. Burial arrangements will be announced shortly,” Xinhua news agency reported quoting Kyari.
OPEC said on Twitter on Wednesday that Barkindo’s death is “a shock to the OPEC family.”
“He was the much-loved leader of the OPEC Secretariat and his passing is a profound loss to the entire OPEC family, the oil industry and the international community,” said OPEC.
Born in April 1959 in northeast Nigeria’s Adamawa state, Barkindo assumed the office of the OPEC secretary general in 2016. His tenure was scheduled to expire in July.