The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari, has expressed sadness over the death of the pioneer managing director of the corporation, the late Chief Festus Remi Ayodele Marinho.
A press release signed by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Dr. Kennie Obateru, said Chief Marinho, who passed away yesterday, was the first and only managing director of the defunct Nigerian National Oil Corporation (NNOC), the forerunner of NNPC, and the only one to serve twice as Group Managing Director of NNPC, first from 1977-1979, and 1984-1985. His last appointment was made by President Muhammadu Buhari as Head of State.
In a condolence message to the family of the late NNPC boss, Mallam Kyari described the late Chief Marinho as “the Father of Oil and Gas Industry in Nigeria” because of the pioneering roles he played in the crafting of the institutional framework, infrastructural development and international best practices being used in the corporation till date.
“His role in refinery and pipeline construction and human capacity development are all testimonies of his contribution to national development,” Mallam Kyari said.
He said Chief Marinho’s visionary leadership provided the foundation for what has come to be known as “Nigerian content”, adding that his achievements in the corporation would be a beacon and inspiration for many future generations of staff and leaders.
“He was indeed a rare gem and we will surely miss his wisdom and wealth of experience,” Mallam Kyari stated.