The writer, Vicky Wireko
The writer, Vicky Wireko

Welcome to another bailout: Thank God for election year

Imagine my excitement listening live to the Finance Minister speaking at a town hall meeting in Croydon, London, last Monday on the possible bouncing back of the Ghanaian economy.


My excitement was the promise he made on that platform that day that all those owed money by defunct financial institutions would receive reimbursement in October this year.  My anguish, after the first bailout in November 2019, was that the final payment of one’s mired retirement investment was going to be realised soon after the elections of 2020.  It did not happen.

That is why for some of us, the soliloquy has been how good this recently announced bailout is. I tried to recollect the pittance payout some of us received during the first bailout as compared to one’s substantial investment that was on hold.  

My consolation has been that since the first bailout happened on the eve of an election year, this recent announcement will also happen as the general election was only months away.


Some of us, with alacrity, have already reached out for the forms to complete together with verification documents, after five years of painful waiting and watching one’s investment painfully lose critical mass in terms of its value.  

One cannot be more ready than now for a final and total payout, which would hopefully bring one’s financial agony in this matter to a conclusive end.

Though the promise is silent on interest payments, one’s hope for now is that the reality of payment will happen as media reports confirm that the President himself has instructed the Minister of Finance to release a bailout amount of GH¢ 1.5 billion towards the exercise.

And even more encouraging is that since the President’s confirmation, one has seen the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), also commencing moves for affected customers to complete the claim process in readiness for payments.

The good news for hundreds of affected persons at a time when most people are under the reel of economic squeeze is that by December 7th, pockets would be beautifully lined and financial anxiety levels lowered, if not eliminated.


While with a good heart, one was beginning to appreciate the promise and start the process to claim one’s stalled investment, it is disappointing the added remark by the minister during the town hall meeting, making one wonder whether it was all a political gimmick made only in passing.  

He probably did not realise that some ill communicated comments have a way of negating any good intention.

The Minister of Finance did not need to come out as if the government was doing customers a favour with the bailout.  In one breath he informed the town hall meeting attendees that there was going to be a bailout, yet in another breath and according to media reports, he said,

“Ideally, the government should not be held responsible for the investment decisions of individuals, but this government is caring.”

If he was not asked a specific question on why the bailout, he owed no one that explanation about a caring or uncaring government.  The decision, in an election year, is to be left to the people whose dividends on investments came to an abrupt since.  

People who had worked hard all their lives saw the wisdom in putting some money aside for their future, hence, selecting financial companies that were seemingly licensed by regulators for which reason some had been in business for at least two decades.  

One understands even some institutional pension funds were invested in some such financial businesses.

So, if regulators allowed such funds management companies to operate in the system, is it the fault of a worker or retiree who found it wise to put something away in terms of investment for their future, knowing how scanty state pensions were?

It was the banking restructuring of 2018 that crashed the hopes of customers with their decades of investment crumbling.  In a case of the sort, why would a Minister of Finance in one breath preach good news and in another breath want to add insult to injury by adding that it is a caring government to have taken steps to pay out the money.  Is the waiting period of six years not hurting enough for customers for anyone to rub it in for us?

Unfortunately, things have moved so slowly for the recovery of one’s money.  In the long dreadful wait, some customers never had the opportunity to enjoy their toils.  

They are reported to have lost their lives at a time they needed cash for their medical treatments and medication.  


For anyone who has waited that long for their funds, the trauma alone has been crippling, and sometimes even suicidal, as one has learnt in the media.  

Customers will, for now, dress their wounds from the hurts and wait patiently for the bailout about to happen. Typically, it is an election year and with a few months to go, one would hold one’s breath for the fulfilment of a soon-to-come promised bailout.

Writer’s E-mail: [email protected]

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