The association in a statement signed by the President, Perpetual Ofori Ampofo, described the debt exchange program as unfair since their pensioners will bear the brunt of the government’s fiscal indiscipline through the debt exchange programme.
“The leadership of the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA) wishes to register its dismay and disappointment at the proposed debt exchange programme as announced by the Minister of Finance on December 5, 2022,” it said.
It said “It is unacceptable that a government that budgets 18% inflation in 2023 will consider zero interest for pension funds of poor, hardworking, law-abiding citizens within the same period.”
This comes following the government’s move to rely on a softer payment plan with institutions and individuals who have lent money to the country as part of efforts to reduce the burden the public debt stock puts on the economy.
The plan, which is in line with the government’s commitment to restore macroeconomic stability in the shortest possible time, involves the swapping of existing domestic bonds with longer-dated bonds that will take between four and 14 years to mature in 2037.
Minister of Finance Ken Ofori-Atta announcing the programme said Ghana is facing a very challenging economic situation amid an increasingly difficult global economic environment, marked by the COVID-19 pandemic, the global economic shock created by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and disruptions of the global supply chains.
He said for the government to alleviate the debt burden in the most transparent, efficient, and expedited manner, treatment of domestic debt is necessary adding that the invitation does not entail any reduction in the principal amount (haircut) of the eligible bonds which involves an exchange for a new government of Ghana bonds with a 0% coupon in 2023 that steps up to 5% in 2024, and 10% from 2025 onwards.