The entire petroleum industry was this morning thrown into mourning mood when the news of the former Minister of Petroleum, Dr. Rilwanu Lukman’s death broke.
Lukman, who was born in Zaria, Kaduna State, on August 26, 1938, died in Austria at the age of 76.
Before his death, he has held several ministerial positions before he became the Secretary General of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, from January 1, 1995 to December 31, 2000.
A trained mining engineer, Lukman was on December 18, 2008, appointed Minister of Petroleum Resources during the administration of the late president, Umaru Yar’Adua, a position he held till March 2010.
Lukman obtained his higher degree in mining engineering from the University of Mining and Metallurgy in Leoben, Austria, between 1967 and 1968, before which he had received training as a mining engineer at the College of Arts, Sciene and Technology, Zaria (now Ahmadu Bello University).
A brilliant engineer who traversed the world, he obtained a degree in Mineral Economics from McGill University, Montreal, in 1978, and also an honorary doctorate degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Bologna, in Italy.
It is on record that his first job in the mining industry was as an Assistant Mining Engineer with A B Statsgruvor of Sweden, a position he held between 1962 and 1964, before returning to Nigeria, to be appointed as Inspector of Mines at the Federal Ministry of Mines and Power, Jos, Plateau State.
In 1970, he became General Manager of the Cement Company of Northern Nigeria, a position he held till 1974.