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CBK to roll out new currency next year at a cost of KES 18 billion

04 March 2016, 08:04 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi - The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor, Patrick Njoroge has assured the current currency bearing portraits of former Presidents will be replaced by September 2017 despite two years delay.

Njoroge, who appeared before the Senate Finance committee chaired by Mandera Senator, Billow Kerrow said there has been a hitch at the procurement stage but they are in the process of re-tendering the process of designing the new look currency that will cost KES 18 billion.

He added that the delay at procurement stage was caused by two of four bidders who offered a zero price on their tender documents for the design of currency.  

“After discussing with legal teams including the Attorney General’s office, we agreed that the offers by the two companies were not valid,” said Njoroge.

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The Senate committee had summoned Njoroge to explain why CBK had not replaced the late founding President Jomo Kenyatta’s portrait on the currency, five years since the new Constitution was promulgated.

Bungoma Senator, Moses Wetang'ula and other senators had warned Njoroge that he risked impeachment for violating the Constitution, as it prohibits the display of a person's face on currency after the stipulated 5 years of transition period.

“We have worked at the roadmap and I would like to assure you that we will have the new- look currency by September 2017,” said Njoroge.

The Governor stated that they arrived at the September date due to the upcoming general election which would not give CBK enough time to sensitize the public.

“During the time, there are several competing interests and it becomes difficult for us to engage public effectively on the use of the new currency,” he said.     

Wetang’ula had demanded to know what the CBK was doing to ensure that new notes were printed and circulated as demanded by the Constitution.

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