Deadline Day for DDE: Individual bondholders urged not to sign up

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta

The Ghana Individual Bondholders’ Forum (IBF) has told members not to sign up for the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDE) if they want to optimise their investments and maintain the “superior” old bonds.

This recommendation was given on the eve of the deadline day for the Programme.

According to a press release issued by one of the convenors of the Forum, Senyo Hosi, no one will be punished for rejecting the Programme.

“The law is in your favour and the Minister of Finance has been categorical in affirming your right by stating that he will honour obligations under the old bonds and will not undertake any action to punish individuals who reject the DDE,” he stated on Monday, January 30.

The press release indicated, however, that those compelled to support the Programme can sign up without hesitation.

The deadline for all to voluntarily sign up for the Programme was for the third time extended on Monday, January 16 to today.

The decision was to allow the government to further engage with bondholders.

Within the period, agreements were reached with the Ghana Association of Banks (GAB), the Ghana Insurers Association (GIA) and the Ghana Securities Industry Association (GSIA).

The government had initially extended subscription to the Programme from Friday, December 30, 2022 to Monday, January 16, picking the following day as Announcement Date.

Per that schedule, Tuesday, January 24 was slated for settlement of invitations.

With Tuesday, January 31 as the latest deadline, it is expected that Wednesday, February 1 will be the Announcement Date.

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Many critics have, however, predicted that there will be another extension as a result of agitations by the individual bondholders.

“People have planned their lives around the bonds that they hold and then suddenly, in the wee hours of 31st December, you sneak this one out and say that now, individual bondholders are part,” former Chairman of the Finance Committee of Parliament Dr Mark Assibey-Yeboah stated in an interview on TV3.

“Because we were all celebrating Christmas, we didn’t pay attention. This is my hard earned money and somebody is picking from it. You told me individual bondholders will not be part, why are you including individual bondholders? Have you engaged the individual bondholders? You haven’t. That is why I say the deadline will be extended again. The consultations we need, the hard decisions we need to take we are not taking them.”


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