CBK boss faces senators over quality, durability of new currency notes

CBK boss Patrick Njoroge is set to face senators to explain the quality of the new generation currency notes launched by President in June last year.

The lawmakers have raised concerns about the quality and durability of the notes which they have termed as poor.

Vihiga senator George Khaniri demanded a report from the CBK governor, through the House Finance and Budget committee, on the new currency notes currently in circulation.

 “In the statement, the committee report on the quality of the new generation currency notes as compared to the old generation currency notes,” Khaniri said.

The legislator wants the governor to explain the cause of ‘poor durability’ of the notes especially the Sh50 bill notes.

“The committee should give a comparative assessment of the printing costs of the new generation currency notes in relation to the old generation currency notes,” he demanded in the statement sought on the floor of the house last week.

Further, the second term senator wants Njoroge to explain security measures put in place to curb proliferation of fake new currency notes following reports of the same being in circulation.

The President launched the notes during Madaraka day celebrations in Narok on June 1, last year.

Three months later, on October 1, old 1000 notes were phased out but old notes for other lower denominations continued circulating with new ones.

Khaniri’s statement comes against the backdrop of complaints from traders and the general public about the quality and durability of the notes.

“I am not happy with the new notes. I wish the old ones could be brought back or else they better improve the quality of the material. I deal with customers every day and they find the new currency notes to be too light,” Boniface Kiwiri had told the star in September last year.

The police has nabbed a number of suspects with fake new notes.  

However, CBK boss had assured Kenyans on the notes’ quality and durability and defended the cost of printing.

De La Rue, bank note printing firm which won the tender to print Kenyan currency in Nairobi, Kenya, had said “it was adding the fresh coat that will see paper money stay longer before getting defaced.

They had also confirmed the “introduction of a new coat of varnish to reduce wear and tear and prolong their life in circulation” as Njoroge had said.

While defending the cost, it was supposedly an indication that the new currencies was expected to last beyond June 2022.

The cost of printing new-look Kenya currency increased by half to Sh15 billion amid delays and introduction of a new coat of varnish to reduce wear and tear.

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