According to a report by Myjoyonline.com, these senior citizens stormed the Finance Ministry to demand that they are exempted totally from the government’s ongoing Domestic Debt Exchange Programme.
DDEP: About 50 Individual Pension Bondholders picketed at Finance Ministry today
Some 50 plus Individual Pension Bondholders picketed at the Finance Ministry in Accra on Monday, February 6, 2023.
The retirees wore red arm bands and carried placards to register their displeasure over their expected inclusion in the programme.
A convener of the group, Dr Adu Anane Antwi, told the media present that they are “rejecting the government's 15% coupon rate over 5-year maturity rate.”
He added, “We want to be totally exempted. We want the government to officially declare us exempted just like they have exempted the pension funds.”
“Our petition is already with them, so we are picketing here until they listen to us,” he opined.
In a related development, Professor Godfred A. Bokpin of the University of Ghana Business School (UGBS), has described as worrying the silence of some major stakeholders in the governance of this country relating to the government’s Domestic Debt Exchange Program (DDEP).
Professor Bokpin in an interview with Starr FM on Monday also noted that he cannot fathom why Parliament as the representative of the people has not summoned the Minister of Finance for questioning.
“We need all important stakeholders, you need the TUC on the table, the TUC should not just wake up because pensions were at risk. What is a pension if the whole country is not governed well? Because if you don’t do this Debt Restructuring very well, adequately and comprehensively it will show up in the next two years.
“If you look at the terms that the Minister has proposed even for the Individual Bondholders you are looking at the principal repayment in 2025 at a time he will not be there. Even the opposition party what is their stake and their contribution in this Debt Restructuring?” Mr. Bokpin queried.
Meanwhile, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has urged the picketing pensioners to support the debt exchange programme.
He stated that failure to secure a bailout with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by mid-March may ground Ghana’s economy to a halt.
Addressing the pensioner bondholders, the Finance Minister pleaded with the pensioners to accept a 3.5% cut and accept the new terms of 15% coupon rate and 5% maturity.
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