The Central Bank of Kenya has just endorsed a new currency for the country. The change sees the removal of pictures of former presidents of Kenya taken off and they are replaced by pictures of Kenyan wildlife. This move has really not gone down well with most Kenya citizens, to them they feel it is a mistake that will be regretted in the nearest future.
The terms regarding Kenyan currency in the constitution were amended in 2010. The amendment made provision for the new currency to carry the pictures of the elephant, lion, rhino, and giraffe on the Sh20, Sh10, Sh5, and Sh1 respectively. While unveiling the new currency the Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta, said it was a remarkable way of recording history. He went further to say that the pictures on the coins properly describe Kenya and her wildlife resources.
The new currency is designed for ease of use by visually impaired individuals which is an added advantage. The contract to print Kenya’s new currency was won by De La Rue International, a British firm. The deal is worth about £85 million which is Sh11.2 billion when converted.
There has however been a legal challenge of the agreement led by Okiya Omtatah. He raised his arguments in November 2017 saying the deal was lopsided to favor the British firm more than Kenya. Omtatah is already planning to take the case to the Supreme Court after the Court of Appeal had ruled in favor of the deal to continue as signed.
The Kenyan populace has however criticized the move saying it will be more profitable for the country to print notes rather than coins. According to them, the new notes are a better way to tackle corruption, especially for those stashing large amounts of money in physical hideouts. This will be achieved if the new notes are of a higher denomination than what is already obtainable in Kenya.