IMANI Africa’s Franklin Cudjoe has urged the government to once again extend the deadline for the domestic debt exchange programme to allow for negotiations.
According to him, it will be in the best interest of the government to do so as it will afford them the opportunity to fully get bondholders on board the programme.
Individual bondholders have put up a strong resistance against the debt programme citing among other things the government’s failure to include them in engagements as well as the lopsided positioning of the deal which they say offloads a significant chunk of the burden on them.
Some have since accused the government and local banks of using subtle coercion to get them to sign the deal.
Addressing the issue on JoyNews’ PM Express, Franklin Cudjoe said, “The question really is, why are we using shadow boxing, subterfuge in order to coerce people, to sign onto something that is supposed to be contractual, really? I mean if it was in good faith you wouldn’t have to use subterfuge.
“I suspect what should be done immediately…I think this deadline of 16th or 17th must be extended, and a proper discussion, a proper negotiation terms handed down by the Ministry of Finance. I don’t even know whether they’re getting overwhelmed by the work itself. It looks to me that they’re very confused.”
“I don’t think they’ll be saving face if they decided to extend the time actually. I think it will be in their best interest to extend the time and cover up the bases properly. And I will submit to people who have been coerced or who are called upon to sign onto something they know very well is not in good faith to desist from doing so,” he added.
He has called on all individual bondholders, including those being coerced to sign onto the deal to join the Individual Bondholders Forum.
The Individual Bondholders Forum was created to pushback against the government’s debt programme and force government to come to the table with a better offer than it is currently proposing.
“If they’ll do that they probably should come under the IBF or any other entity that is calling on people for some mass action. But that is the only language I suspect will be understood at this juncture. Otherwise they’ll be on their own really,” he said.
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