11 January 2014 17:55

 A protesting bank bond holder yesterday was ready to ram the Parliament building with his pick-up truck before being dissuaded by the police and calmer colleagues.
Dozens of bond holders congregated outside Parliament to demand the support of the visiting European Parliament Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs.
The delegation is preparing a report to evaluate the Troika’s operations in Cyprus.
Bank Bond Holders Association members were demonstrating against the decisions taking in the course of the bailout that render their investment useless.
The Bank of Cyprus (BoC) and the former Laiki Bank stopped paying interest on the securities after they incurred losses from the Greek sovereign debt write-down in 2011.
Many investors say they had been told this would not be a possibility and some saying they had lost their life savings when the banks stopped paying interest.
The bonds offered up to 7% return, significantly better than that offered by savings accounts. A number of holders are trying to sue the banks claiming they were not properly informed of the high risks involved in their investment.
Association president Phivos Mavrovouniotis yesterday said that he hoped the delegation would be sympathetic to their complaint of unfair treatment by the Troika.
“We have been misled and deceived and based on the findings of investigations the banks have committed serious illegal actions,” Mavrovouniotis said.
Having also cut off traffic outside the House yesterday, the protestors related some of their frustration to European Parliament Committee delegation as they entered the building to meet House Speaker Yiannakis Omirou.
Delegation head, Othmar Karas, assured the protestors that the group aimed at ensuring transparency: “We are here to listen to you.”
Mavrouvountis also said that an Association representation would be meeting with officials at the Presidential Palace on January 22. The meeting, he said, would be attended by the Ministers of Finance and Justice as well as the Attorney General and head of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The meeting has been organised to discuss the bill on a Court of Arbitration.


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