Pensioner Bondholders picket for 2nd day at Finance Ministry

 Members of the Pen­sioner Bondholders Forum for the second consecutive day yesterday picket­ed at the Ministry of Finance to implore on government to pay outstanding coupons on their matured bonds.

The government has not been able to pay the coupons on ma­tured bonds for the pensioner bondholders who were exempt­ed from the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP).

Following Ghana’s signing on an International Monetary Fund programme last year for a balance of payment support to address the macroeconom­ic challenges, the government embarked on a DDEP to bring the country’s debt on the path of sustainability.

The members of the Pension­er Bondholders Forum asked to be exempted from the DDEP and the government promised to pay their matured coupons principals in full.

The government promised to pay the bondholders who were exempted from the DDEP, but the Finance Ministry is said to have failed to make the settle­ment.

But according to the group, government had not paid them, making life difficult and unbear­able for them and this led them to troop to the Finance Ministry to asked government to pay them their locked up funds.

The group said the latest picketing at the Finance Ministry this week beginning on Monday was to protest the failure of the government to pay them their outstanding coupons of their matured bonds.

The Convenor for the group, Dr Adu Anane Antwi, said the group would not sue govern­ment to seek for the payment of their monies in view of the long processes and delays associated with court cases.

He said a legal course would not help their cause and what was needed was to put pres­sure on government to pay them.

Dr Antwi said life had become difficult and unbearable for the members of the group.

He said the failure of gov­ernment to honour them their money compelled them to picket at the Finance Ministry.

He said the group would continue to picket until their monies were paid.

“We are fight­ing for exemp­tions, we have been exempted, and now we are not be­ing paid. We are fighting for coupons and payments,” Dr Antwi is reported as saying.

He said the government had failed to pay 19 cou­pons and three princi­pals since February after exempting the pensioners from the DDEP.

Dr Antwi said the picketing would continue and start from 10 am to 11 am every working day un­til further notice.

The Convenor suggested to government to borrow from Treasury Bills to pay the out­standing matured coupons of the Pensioner Bondholders.

“The government can borrow from the Treasury Bills market to pay us. If you borrow from the Treasury Bills market, it will raise your debt level, but you are faced with a situation where you have to do that for people who need their money for medica­tion,” Dr Antwi stated.

“We are pensioners. We need this money for important things such as drugs and upkeep. After serving the nation, you don’t expect pensioners to go through this ordeal for their own money,” he stated


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