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Kenya’s new banknotes and the fight from corruption


Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has introduced that the country’s currency is to be replaced with a new era of banknotes.

Kenyans should return their 1,000 shilling ($10 £8) notes to banking companies by 1 Oct, in a bid to battle income laundering, counterfeits and corruption.

New currency is to be introduced in around the coming months with other denominations becoming phased out gradually.

Some Kenyans have expressed anger in excess of the new banknote design, which characteristics an picture of a statue of Kenya’s initially President, Jomo Kenyatta – the present-day president’s father.

The conclusion on the design and style, as nicely as the clampdown on the 1,000 shilling notes, has been challenged in court.

Why is Kenya changing its forex?

Kenya is withdrawing the note to crack down on embezzlement and tackle a wave of counterfeit 1,000 shilling notes.

The governor of Kenya’s central bank, Patrick Njoroge, also expressed “grave worry” around larger sized banknotes staying used for “illicit fiscal flows in Kenya and also other countries in the location”.

The new Ksh100 Kenyan note showing the statue of President Kenyatta

The new 100 shilling be aware exhibiting the statue of President Kenyatta

The 1,000 shilling be aware is the maximum value be aware in Kenya and in accordance to Mr Njoroge, the Kenyan shilling is the equivalent to the US greenback in east Africa, in conditions of its recognition.

President Kenyatta promised to stamp out corruption when he was elected in 2013.

But his critics say there have been several convictions because then, specifically of substantial-profile individuals.

BBC Africa small business reporter Georgie Ndirangu suggests the demonetisation – the withdrawal of a coin, be aware, or important metallic from use as authorized tender – is seen as a direct response to this criticism.

Officials and well related businessmen in corrupt cartels are believed to maintain hundreds of millions of illegally attained shillings in hard cash, and withdrawing the 1,000 shilling observe is expected to close quite a few funds-laundering avenues, as they have to be exchanged for the new forex, he claimed.

How will the changeover occur?

The banknote also shows a lion, giraffes and elephants

The new banknote also shows Kenya’s Massive 5 – its most well-known wildlife

Mr Njoroge stated the 4-month transition period should really allow for ample time for Kenyans to trade their aged 1,000 shilling notes.

All those exchanging fewer than 5m shillings would be equipped to do so at their community bank but any increased quantities will have to have approval from Kenya’s central bank.

Mr Njoroge said he would be keeping talks with administrators of international-trade bureaux and dollars-remittance vendors to put in location controls to avoid illicit economic flows.

He explained he would talk with banking institutions throughout the area so that illegal funds did not get exchanged in their countries.

Why are Kenyans angry about the new currency?

As perfectly as showcasing Kenya’s wildlife, the new banknote style attributes the Kenyatta Global Convention Centre (KICC) with a statue of Jomo Kenyatta in the center.

He played a major function in foremost Kenya to independence and went on to turn out to be the country’s initially president.

The Structure of Kenya 2010 claims that funds – the two coins and banknotes – need to not element a portrait of an unique.

Human Rights Activist Okiya Omtatah is difficult the decision in courtroom, arguing that there has been a deficiency of general public participation in building the notes, as nicely as the demonetisation of the present-day 1,000 shilling note.

But some Kenyans back again the final decision to put Kenyatta on the take note. A single gentleman claimed it was a “indicator of regard” for the “founding father” of Kenya.

What other countries have demonetised?

In 2016, India modified just about all of its dollars right away, which some critics declare caused long-term economic complications. The Indian governing administration stated it was a important shift to tackle tax evasion and terrorism funding, and in a state in which 90% of transactions are in money, to go in the direction of a cashless culture.

Nigeria launched a equivalent ban on old notes in 1984 in an attempt to crackdown on corruption, as did Ghana in 1982 to support with tax evasion.

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