BoU Demonetises 1987 Series Currency Notes

2406 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
Bank of Uganda has demonetised the 1987 series currency notes and asked commercial banks to cease issuing them to customers. The notes cease to be legal tender effective March 30 2013, according to Dr Louis Kasekende, the deputy central bank Governor. The affected notes are in the denominations of shillings 1,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000 and 50,000 printed before the year 2010.

Bank of Uganda has demonetised the 1987 series currency notes and asked commercial banks to cease issuing them to customers.

The notes cease to be legal tender effective March 30 2013, according to deputy central bank Governor Dr Louis Kasekende.

Kasekende says all commercial banks have already been notified to cease issuing the 1987 series notes to their customers. The affected notes are in the denominations of shillings 1,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000 and 50,000 printed before the year 2010. This includes the 10,000 commemorative note that was printed ahead of the 2007 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Chogm) in Kampala.
 
Kasekende says all the coins are not affected. A timetable has been drawn for commercial banks and the public exchange the old notes that are already in circulation. According to the central bank, the public may continue to transact normally using the 1987 series notes already in circulation up to March 30 2013, after which date the notes won’t be acceptable in day to day transaction.
 
From March 30 to May 30, commercial banks will be exchanging the affected notes with those who would still be having them at full face value, meaning a 1,000 shillings note will be exchanged for another 1,000 shillings note. After May 30, commercial banks will also cease to exchange the currency notes. People still having them will have to exchange them at Bank of Uganda currency centres in Kampala, Mbale, Jinja, Masaka, Arua, Gulu, Mbarara, Kabale and Fort Portal until December 31 2013 when they would cease permanently cease to be legal tender.
 
According to Kasekende, the old notes constitute 4% of the total 2.3 trillion notes in circulation.
 
Kasekende explained that the old currency notes are being phased out partly because they have a lot of counterfeits compared to the new notes. He said the Ugandan money that is circulating in D R Congo, South Sudan and Central African Republic would also be exchanged through collaboration with central banks in those countries.
 
Uganda has a strong business community in Sudan and some parts of DRC, while its forces, the UPDF are deployed in Central African Republic hunting for Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army rebels.
 
In May 2010, Bank of Uganda introduced a new 2000 shillings currency note to the market, and changed the design of the existing notes, the first major redesign since 1987 when country changed its entire currency. The new 2,000 shillings note has been circulating alongside the older and new notes of Shillings 1,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, and 50,000.

According to the central bank, the redesign was meant to deal with the problem of counterfeiting, making it difficult for fraudsters to forge the notes. The notes were designed by indigenous Ugandans including former army commander, General Elly Tumwine.