The Pensioner Bondholders Forum, a group fighting for the rights of pensioners who have invested in government bonds, has declared its intention to picket at the Finance Ministry until its members are exempt from the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP).
In a statement, the group explained the reason behind their decision to protest: “On 10 January 2023, we submitted a petition to the Minister of Finance to exempt all pensioners holding Government Bonds from the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme on the same basis used for the exemption of Pension Funds from the programme, as the impact of the programme on pensioners who are bondholders will be very severe.”
“We have as of today not been granted the exemption we requested. To further press home our request, we have notified the Police that about 50 of our members intend to converge at the premises of the Ministry of Finance on every working day from 10 am-11 am, beginning from Monday 6th February 2023 till our request is granted by the Minister.” They continued.
The deadline for the government's Domestic Debt Exchange Programme has been set for Tuesday, February 7, 2023. The Individual bondholders have also expressed their opposition to their inclusion in the government's debt exchange program.
On Wednesday, February 1, organized labour also reaffirmed its opposition to the government's DDEP and pledged to reject any attempts to repackage the program to include pension funds.