Monday, July 6, 2020

Gambians await new banknotes without Jammeh’s portrait

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Lamin Fadera
Lamin Fadera is a sports journalist based in the Gambia
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Gambia will in the coming weeks issue new bank notes that will be without the portrait of the former President Yahya Jammeh.

The former leader who was forced out of office in 2016 has his pictures all over Gambia currency banknotes.

But in an attempt to wipe out his legacy many considered unhealthy, the current government has initiated steps to replace all banknotes with his portrait.

The 200 Dalasi notes were introduced in 2015, while in 2014 Yahya Jammeh introduced the 20 Dalasi notes in green to mark 20 years as president of the Gambia.

This month the Gambia’s Central Bank confirmed plans to issue new bank notes and have them in circulation this year.

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The Central Bank already got an approval to introduce new redesigned bank notes.

The aimed was to also reduce the sizes of the national currency notes to achieve efficiency and introduce new security features.

Central Bank officials say the new notes to be released have advanced security features that would make counterfeiting difficult.

The new notes will bear features considered representative of The Gambia. New features include various bird species in the country and historical sites, according to officials.

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Yahya Jammeh placed his portrait on many of the banknotes.

Analysts react to new design

A former staff member of the central bank of the Gambia Momodou Sabally told Africa Feeds that Yahya Jammeh should never have had his portrait on the Gambian currency.

He narrated that “One of the costly mistake Jammeh did was when he came to power after he topple Jawara’s government, the first thing he said was how can one man picture be on our currency then he change it and a new currency were design.

I guess we all know in Africa the longer our people stay in power the crazier they become. I guess he over stay in power and think he is invincible and can rule for a billion years so he should have never and put his head on the Gambian currency.”

A previous Gambian currency with former President Jawara’s portrait. Jammeh replaced that with his portrait.

According to Sabally the government took a political move to change the currency because it’s aim was to remove Jammeh from office which happened in 2016.

When asked whether the removal of Jammeh’s head on the currency is worthy, Sabally emphasize that it is political motivated.

“We all know the coalition government’s objective was achieved in 2016 and now they took another political smart move to remove Jammeh’s head from the currency which to me is not a bad idea” he said.

For Sabally the change of the currency design is welcoming news adding that he “heard the governor said that the security features will be improved and that is a good thing because when that happen it will make it very difficult to counterfeit the currency.”

“We all know counterfeit is a problem everywhere, even the dollar is counterfeit so if the security features are improved it will help economy because the more complicated your securities features are the more difficult it will be to counterfeit a currency successfully” he echoed.

On the impact the change of currency design will cause the economy, Sabally highlighted that the changes will not have a significant impact on the Gambian economy.

Gambian president Adama Barrow is hoping to reform the country after taking over in 2016. Photo: Reuters

Gambians divided

For the APRC supporters this is a witch hunt against their supreme leader Yahya Jammeh.

Buba Sanneh who describes Barrows government as failed administration said he was not surprise with this move because he knows that they want to bury Jammeh’s history.

“We heard that the new currency design will be out soon and our leader’s head will be remove from it, this is a witch hunts, few days ago the government announced that his assets are frozen, are they telling us after 22 years this man cannot get something, that is a joke,” Sanneh said.

But for Musa Fatty the change of the new currency design is a welcoming news because Jammeh has caused a lot of atrocities in the Gambia during his tenure.

He said seeing Jammeh’s picture on the currency every time gives him a bad memory of the former president of the Gambia.

Yahya Jammeh ruled Gambia for decades and was forced into exile in 2016 after losing the presidential elections won by President Adama Barrow.

 

Source: Africafeeds.com

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