Sh1,000 NOTES

There's plenty of time to exchange Sh1,000 notes

Countries regularly change their currencies.

In Summary

• Picture of a statue is probably not a portrait

• Countries regularly change their currencies


Yesterday Governor Patrick Njoroge said the Central Bank would vigorously contest legal challenges to block the introduction of new currency notes.

The Constitution does say there should be no portraits on banknotes. The new notes do show a statue of Jomo Kenyatta in front of KICC. A portrait normally means a close-up of someone's face which is not the case here. But it is an arguable point.

The other objections are flimsy. There is no constitutional obligation for the CBK to consult on the design of banknotes — and no one has objected to the design of the new coins.

Many countries declare old currency to be void after a certain date. Various years of dollar bills are no longer accepted by the US Treasury. In 2016 India got rid of 500 and 1,000 rupee notes overnight.

Clearly, some people feel that they will lose out when the old Sh1,000 note ceases to be legal tender on October 1. But they will have had plenty of warning. It is their problem if they have too many Sh1,000 notes to exchange legally before that date.



Quote of the day:  "The West exploited Africa and now it wants to save it. We have been living with this hypocrisy for too long. Africa can only be saved by Africans."

Joseph Kabila
The former Congolese president was born on June 4, 1971