• CBK governor Patrick Njoroge announced the notes were released on Friday, May 31.
• Njoroge said to curb illicit finance, all old Sh1,000 series notes have been withdrawn by a Gazette notice dated May 31
The new generation bank notes are now in circulation.
During Madaraka Day celebrations on Saturday, CBK governor Patrick Njoroge announced the notes were issued on Friday, May 31 via a Gazette notice.
The new notes are now legal tender.
Njoroge said to curb illicit finance, all old Sh1,000 series notes have been withdrawn by a Gazette notice dated May 31 and Kenyans have until October 1 to exchange the older notes for newer ones.
"We have assessed the grave concern that our arge banknotes—particularly the older Sh1,000 series—are being used for illicit financial flows in Kenya and also other countries in the region," he said.
"More recently we have seen the emergence of some counterfeits. These are grave concerns that would jeopardise proper transactions and the conduct of commerce in our currency."
All notes bear the image of KICC.
They also have each of the Big Five animals.
Njoroge said, "The new banknotes bear a significant aspect of our nation, and like the coins, will serve as a means of passing knowledge, conserving culture and promoting our global uniqueness."
" All bank notes bear the image of Kenyatta International Conference Centre, one of the most iconic and recognisable landmarks in our country. The banknotes also embody each of the big five; nyati, chui, kifaru, simba, and ndovu."
Each note has a unique theme.
Sh50 is for green energy, Sh100 for agriculture, Sh200 social services, Sh500 for tourism and Sh1,000 for governance.
Following the passing of the 2010 Constitution, the CBK was mandated to spearhead the production and roll out of the new currency notes.
The Constitution prohibits the use of a person’s portrait on currencies meaning the upgrade is expected to have new features.
Notes currently in circulation have the images of first President Jomo Kenyatta and his successor Daniel Arap Moi.
The new-look notes are fashioned to enable the visually-impaired to use them.