September 12, 2019
Sunday afternoon I returned from lunch with the sisters next door and sat down to work on a crossword puzzle; at 1:20, there was a ‘click’ sound and the lights came on. There was electricity—I was stunned and excited. After three weeks and three days, it is a relief. But, not everyone in the area is as fortunate. There continue to be problems with the transmission of electricity to this area, and some remain without power. As has been the case of the past weeks, calls to Kenya Power remain unanswered. One wag commented, “Kenya Power is even more corrupt than the police.” And, I would add, they lack civic responsibility.
In June of this year, President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya announced that the currency of the country would be replaced with new banknotes in an effort to fight money laundering, counterfeits, and corruption. Kenya has banknotes in the following denominations: KSH 50, 100, 200, 500, and 1,000. (The exchange rate with the U.S. dollar averages $1.00=KSH 100.) Already, there have been reports of counterfeit notes in the new currency.
By October 1, 2019 the KSH 1,000 note will be phased out, that is, it will no longer be considered legal tender in the nation. Over a period of time, this will occur with the other denominations. In the past several weeks, the new KSH 1,000 note has become the norm with the old KSH 1,000 notes not being issued by banks. Some entities, one being the United States Embassy, no longer accept the old notes.
Any machine that uses a banknote has to be reconfigured, for example, ATMs and parking ticket validation stations, and this work, throughout the nation, must be done in three months. It is an all-out effort on behalf of the Central Bank of Kenya, who is the monetary authority of Kenya.
Enjoy pictures of the old notes and the new notes below: