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Uhuru now takes war on corruption into graft merchants’ bedrooms

President Uhuru Kenyatta appears to be following through his word to fight corrupt individuals after the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) issued a notice giving all persons until October 1 to exchange the old Sh1,000 notes to the new ones.

The announcement was made by CBK Governor Patrick Njoroge while unveiling the new bank notes during the Madaraka Day celebrations in Narok county.

The new notes are already in circulation after been gazetted on May 31, 2019.

“We have assessed the grave concern that our large bank notes, particularly the older Sh1,000 series, are being used for illicit financial flaws in Kenya and also other countries in the region. To deal with those concerns, all the older Sh1,000 series shall be withdrawn by a Gazette Notice dated May 31, 2019, all persons have until October 1, 2019 to exchange those notes, after which the older Sh1,000 bank notes will cease to be legal tender,” said Njoroge.

MILLIONS IN BEDROOMS

His comments sparked an online debate with Kenyans on Twitter expressing concern to wealthy individuals who are now for stashing millions of shilling in their bedrooms.

“This new directive on Ksh 1000 notes is good for Mpesa . Fungueni ma mpesa outlet, izo pesa watu waeke kwa simu, mpesa agents watawapelekea kwa bank,” Silvaharon said.

“The withdrawal of Ksh1000 note by CBK will see the corrupt go bankrupt after 1st Oct. The battle against corruption has just been strengthened. I wish a shorter time was given… #madarakaday in Narok County,” JuscticeMugo wrote.

“Good news that the CBK governor is introducing the new legal tender. People were caught off-guard… You can wonder how people will be trying to get rid of stolen money# ksh 1000,” Joe Ace tweeted.

CONSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENT

“Wangapi wanangoja memes za watu wamebeba suitcases wakirudisha Ksh 1000 notes Kwa banks?” Musimbi Vivian asked.

“So, for these people with billions in “Ksh 1000″ notes in their homes, what’s the plan? I am available if you’d like to share to get rid of some of those billions,” ENyandong commented.

Other countries which have also taken such a stance to weed out corruption include India in 2016 when its government decided to demonetize the 500 and 1,000 Rupee bills.

The new currency has been a long time coming for Kenyans following the promulgation of the new Constitution of Kenya in 2010.

“Notes and coins issued by the CBK may bear images that depict or symbolise Kenya or an aspect of Kenya, but shall not bear the portrait of any individual,” reads Section 231(4) of the Constitution.