Convener of the Pensioner Bondholders Forum, Dr. Adu Anane Antwi, says the Forum will not back down on its plan to get the government to formally exempt them from the debt exchange programme.
The Pensioner Bondholders Forum, Monday, picketed in front of the Finance Ministry for an hour to impress on the Finance Minister to formally exempt them from the domestic debt exchange programme.
According to the Forum, the same grace that was extended to the Pension Funds should be extended to Pensioners as most of them depend on their coupons to cater for themselves and their children.
However, the government has refused to exempt them, rather offering them an “improved and enhanced offer.”
In a press statement on the eve of the final deadline for the debt exchange programme, Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta stated that “Having listened to and acknowledged emerging concerns, we have recalibrated the framework of the DDEP, with the following constituting the terms of the improved and enhanced offer:
“All individual bondholders who are below the age of 59 years (Category A) are being offered instruments with a maximum maturity of 5 years, instead of 15 years, and a 10% coupon rate;
“All retirees (including those retiring in 2023) (Category B) are being offered instruments with a maximum maturity of 5 years, instead of 15 years, and a 15% coupon rate.”
Pensioner Bondholders also have the option to self-exempt from the debt treatment exercise.
However, reacting to the Minister’s statement, Dr. Adu Anane Antwi says the group, despite the offers, is still pursuing full exemption to be rest assured that their investments will be safe no matter the outcome of the debt treatment.
“The offer he says he’s not going to change but that doesn’t mean everybody must come under that offer. So for us we’re not saying he should change the terms of the offer, we’re only saying that we should be exempted from the offer,” he says.
He added that while the debt treatment’s deadline has already been reached, he is hopeful that the Finance Minister could still create an exemption for them.
He noted that the group will continue to picket at the Finance Ministry till the exemption is granted.
“No. Anything is possible. So we’ll continue to converge there until we get the exemption,” he said.
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