The Individual Bondholder Association has admonished the government to use the Ghc87 billion excess identified in the 2023 budget for the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP).

Speaking on the Morning Starr with Francis Abban, Convener of the Bondholders, Mr. Gayheart Mensah indicated that the government’s expenditure for 2023 has increased compared to last 2022.

He described as trivial and untrue the assertion by some section of people that pensioners were being paid 14.5 percent and now the government is giving them 15 percent.

“We are talking about losses and the government’s expenditure is still going up. The government is not behaving as someone in a debt situation so why should the individual bondholder be in debt? As individuals when we have challenges, we look inside and take those cuts that will enable us to sustain ourselves and our families.

“We don’t go and dip our hands into other people’s pockets in order to manage our financial crisis. So you don’t dip your hands in an individual’s pocket to resolve national problems. There are a lot of issues that are under this Debt Exchange Programme that make it very unfair,” Mr. Mensah stated.

He continued: “Why are the individual bondholders made to proportionately take responsibility for Ghana’s debt? We have sat with the government and we came up with almost Ghc87 billion of costs that were unnecessary when you come to the budget of 2023. A cost that we think that in our current situation can be brought down.”

Meanwhile, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta is billed to appear before Parliament on Thursday, February 16, 2023, following the agitations disrupting the government’s Domestic Debt Exchange programme.

Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin directed the Business Committee of the House to summon the Finance Minister to give a policy brief on the programme amid protests by pensioner bondholders for an exemption from the programme.

Minority Leader, Cassiel Ato Forson has assured Pensioner Bondholders and others that parliament will move swiftly to address the burning issues related to the ongoing domestic debt exchange program.

Source: Ghana/