Businesses break off use of old Ksh.1000 notes days to Oct 1 deadline


Kenyans have until October 1 to exchange old Ksh.1000 notes with the new one above from ...
Kenyans have until October 1 to exchange old Ksh.1000 notes with the new one above from the CBK

In Summary

  • Businesses have attributed the early divorce which sits against the legally prescribed Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) directive to a deliberate business risk mitigation in the face of the closing in termination.
  • The risk for deviant effects remains elevated in frontier counties who unlike their urban counter parts deal with a differentiated set of circumstances.
  • While the majority of enterprises turn a blind eye on the acceptance of the old notes, commercial banks could represent the only hope to consumers as the lenders assure of the acceptance of the notes to Monday’s 11th hour.

Consumers looking to transact in the old series Ksh.1000 note face the risk of rejection by businesses as many of the enterprises dissociate themselves from the use of the exiting currency.

While the US embassy was the first entity to officially segregate the old notes on September 12, other enterprises have too broken-off from the acceptance of the old note in slightly under a week to the September 30th deadline.

Businesses have attributed the early divorce, which sits against the legally prescribed Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) directive, to a deliberate business risk mitigation in the face of the closing in termination.

“As of today I can no longer accept the old notes as it is problematic. It would be possible to accept the old series note but I can’t hand over the same to a customer,” Joy Chepkorir, a mobile-money kiosk operator inside Nairobi’s Central Business District told Citizen Digital on Monday.

Larger corporations have too followed a similar trend with giant telco operator Safaricom similarly advising customers on its intended severe of ties with the retiring Ksh.1000 note in all of its retail stores from September 27.

“Safaricom will not take old notes after September 26 to allow us bank in time. Please note all Ksh.1000 notes must be submitted with the September 27 Cash in Transit (CIT) collections,” the company noted in an operations memo seen by Citizen Digital at the end of last week.

Even so, the risk of panic in the majority of urban dwellings stands minimized as large cash handlers inform of minimal old series notes in circulation at this time.

“For every 100,000 notes we are only getting five or ten units of the old series Ksh.1000 notes. We are still seeing the old notes but a much lesser frequency,” Stephen Macharia a Chief Cashier at Tuskys said.

However, the risk for deviant effects remains elevated in frontier counties who unlike their urban counter parts deal with a differentiated set of circumstances.

In the livestock rearing county of Mandera, residents have been hit hard by the demonetization order as neighboring Ethiopia and Somalia reject the use of the circulating old series Ksh.1000 notes in turn cutting off key food purchases.

While the majority of enterprises turn a blind eye on the acceptance of the old notes, commercial banks could represent the only hope to consumers as the lenders assure of the acceptance of the notes to Monday’s eleventh hour.

“Walk-in customers will be allowed to transact in the old notes until the close of business on Monday September 30,” Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) Chief Executive Officer Habil Olaka said in a phone interview last week.

CBK has acknowledged receipt of the observations on the rejection of the old series Ksh.1000 notes by some business entities but has stuck by its October 1 deadline insisting it will not be extended.

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Story By Kepha Muiruri
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