Following the Borg Invasion of that year, Barrile was in office when Alpha Centauri was forced to accept refugees from other Federation worlds, even establishing a camp in the capital of New Samarkand. Governor Barrile never visited the camp located in the capital. (TNG novel: Losing the Peace)
As a result of popular Centaurian resentment over the sacrifices being forced upon them by other Federation worlds and of conflict between the refugees and native inhabitants, rioting later broke out in New Samarkand. When Federation News Service reporter Yrik Ulfthar contacted Governor Barrile's office, Barrile had no comment. (ST novel: A Singular Destiny)
In private, Governor Barrile took the opportunity to force the Federation Starfleet to dispatch a ship to the Alpha Centauri system. When the rioting was brought under control before the USS Enterprise arrived, he expressed his resentment of Starfleet's absence to its commanding officer before beaming aboard.
There, Governor Barrile had a confrontation with Federation Starfleet Captain Jean-Luc Picard in which he expressed deep-seated rage at the Federation government. He revealed that he had uncovered evidence of then-Starfleet Commander-in-Chief Edward Jellico's order that Starfleet vessels abandon the Federation and concede the war to the Borg Collective in order to escape should Earth fall, and believed that this constituted a fundamental betrayal of Alpha Centauri and the other Federation Member States. Barrile further resented the pressures being placed upon Alpha Centauri to help other Federation worlds: In addition to the pressures being placed upon Alpha Centauri by the influx of refugees in such camps as those outside New Samarkand, Governor Barrile was further angered by threats from Federation President Nanietta Bacco to federalize Centaurian mining and manufacturing industries, shipping topaline processors and factories to words devastated in the invasion, such as Vulcan, Andor, and Tellar.
In consequence of these issues, Governor Barrile planned to schedule a system-wide plebiscite to consider the question of secession from the United Federation of Planets. In response to this threat and to an urgent call for help from the iy'Dewra'ni Refugee Camp on Pacifica, Captain Picard refused to return Governor Barrile to the surface of Alpha Centauri III, instead transporting him to Pacifica and forcing him to view the camp up close. Deeply moved, Governor Barrile gave an address from the camp that was transmitted throughout the Federation by the USS Enterprise, calling for mutual sacrifice and empathy in the Federation's time of need. He further announced that the plebiscite would go forward, with another question added to the ballot: A measure to re-ratify the Articles of the Federation and thereby reconfirm Alpha Centauri's promise to be an equal partner in Federation society.