CBK issues fresh order to all persons holding Sh5 million in cash

Important notice following launch of new currency notes

Governor Patrick Njoroge confirms only amounts above Sh5 million will be exchanged at CBK

Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor Patrick Njoroge on Monday issued a statement to clarify on how amounts of between Sh1 million and Sh5 million and over will be exchanged following the launch of new currency notes.

Governor Njoroge directed that amounts of between Sh1 million and Sh5 million will be exchanged at local banks comfortably while the CBK will handle amounts above Sh5 million as well as transactions for those who don't have bank accounts.

Those wishing to exchange amounts of below Sh1 million will also do so at banks where they have put their money.

"People who want to exchange amounts between Sh1M and Sh5M will need to go to their own banks. Those who do not have bank accounts and want to exchange this amount will need to contact the CBK. We will then endorse them and they can go to a designated bank branch.

"People who want to exchange amounts above KES 5 million will need to contact the CBK. We have, however, analyzed these and found that these are very few," the CBK boss clarified.

Uproar over Kenyatta portrait and October 1 deadline

Dr Njoroge also addressed concerns raised over the October 1 deadline when the old Sh1,000 note will cease to be legal tender.

"Demonetisation is a tool of central banking, and has happened even in Kenya. We demonetised at the end of 2011, including the 5-shilling note.

"We looked at the matter of demonetisation in India and learned from it. They demonetised immediately. Imagine if you’re a truck driver, and when it was announced, you could not buy food nor fuel. You couldn’t rush to the bank to change money. This is why we’ve allowed a period for transactions to continue.

"We've allowed the time for the withdrawal of the banknotes because we need to take care of our people. We’re ensuring that there is enough cash in all the bank branches," he explained.

He also addressed pending suits over the portrait of founding President Jomo Kenyatta on the face of the new notes.

Activist Okiya Omtatah and EALA MP Simon Mbogua have both filed suits with the courts over the portrait and what has been termed as lack of consultation with the public respectively.

"The design of the New Generation Currency banknotes is in conformity with the Constitution," he stated.

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