The exchange of the 1000-shilling note is set to curb money laundering and corruption in the country as those thought to be hiding money in their homes are bound to have their stashes of the note devalued as banks release new notes.
There is an alleged feeling of desperation among those suspected to be hoarding money acquired illegally and who are hence unable to bank it as they cannot openly declare its source. Such individuals are faced with the challenge of losing the money when it is devalued on 1st October as Kenya officially moves on to the new currency as is dictated by the 2010 Constitution.
Those that seek to keep the value of their illegally acquired money will be in a desperate mode to exchange it to dollars and other currencies, while those that plan to seek political office in future will run around dishing out money.
Question is, will changing the currency seize the corrupt? No! It is ridiculous to imagine that the thieves who hide amongst leaders and masquerade as the hope for our country have been hanging around with their money awaiting the change of currency to have their money lose value. Are they not the masters of the constitution?
Those that have enough money to hoard don’t even use the Kenyan currency. Most of our politicians, leaders, and business moguls use dollars instead, not the Kenyan currency. So, why would anyone keep the 1000-shilling note awaiting the day it devalues?
The announcement of the currency change was not to scare those hoarding illegally acquired money but just an official way to inform the average Kenyans to go change their notes since it is in line with the Constitution. Those that we are assuming are targeted by this currency exchange initiative began the process of dumping the 1000-shilling note or rather the Kenyan currency back in 2010 when the Constitution was signed into law.
A number of countries have, however, joined the hullabaloo of trying to convince Kenyans that the corrupt will suddenly become poor as their money, assumed not only to be in denomination of 1000 shillings but also in the Kenyan currency, gets devalued.
Kenyans are hence in a stampede of inviting politicians and individuals they perceive as corrupt and engaged in money laundering to harambees to have them dish out the money they imagine was lying somewhere awaiting to lose value.
The bank of Tanzania on 10th June 10, 2019 froze the exchange of Kenyan bank notes. Kenya advised Tanzania to freeze the CBK Currency Collection Account by the Central Bank of Kenya, which also assured it of a new series of banknotes. Anybody with the Kenyan note in Tanzania will therefore have to carry it to Kenya for exchange, which is bound to affect Kenyan traders in Tanzania.
The British High Commissioner has warned that it is closely monitoring the forex bureaus to make sure money acquired illegally does not get converted into the British pound.
Kenya has advised the bank of Uganda to freeze the exchange of Kenyan bank notes. Kenya has assured Uganda of a new series of banknotes. Anybody with the Kenyan note in Uganda will have to carry it to Kenya for exchange, which will affect Kenyan traders in Uganda as well.