Minister designate for energy and petroleum, Boakye Agyarko, changed the mood in parliament during his vetting on Monday.
Narrating his ordeal during the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC) era, Boakye Agyarko revealed that he nearly lost his life during the military regime under Jerry Rawlings - a development which convulsed him to seek political asylum in America.
“I went to the US as a political refugee, and qualified as such. In a matter of two years, I was able to upgrade my status from a refugee to that of a resident permit holder. This is because I had a number of equity situations namely; my sister could apply for me to hold a green card as well as my mother, who had become a naturalized American citizen. Throughout the period, I stayed in America on a Green card, and at no point in time did I become a citizen of the United States,” he revealed.
The most shocking side of the story was how he met face to face with death after his national service in June 1983.
“I was employed by Management and Investment Consultants in 1980 after my national service. In June 1983, for those who will recall, there was a mutiny led by lance corporal Halidu Giwa. I was picked up by the Military and sent to the Airforce Station and put against the wall and shot. I almost lost my life, and through the intervention of Monsieur Le Veloire and my two sisters who are seated behind me, I was able to leave Ghana through London to France, and then settled in the United States under very difficult circumstances. So for that period, I was close to being an invalid; and I didn’t do any work. Even though I left officially in 1983, Management and Investment Consultants wrote to me officially saying that as at the end of 1984 I was no longer employed with them, so my employment with them ended in 1984, and the next two years I was going through a series of surgeries and recuperation,” he narrated.
Boakye Agyarko holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Political Science from the University of Ghana, Legon; an Advanced Professional Certificate in Banking from the American Institute of Banking and an MBA in Financial Economics from the Pace University, New York.