– Bank of Zambia (BoZ) Governor Michael Gondwe says there is need for all Zambians to accept the use of all the new money in circulation especially the re-introduced coins.
And Dr Gondwe has urged the media to highlight stories on the new rebased currency.
Dr Gondwe observed that for over two decades, coins were not used in the country hence the need for the people to clear their psychology surrounding coins as a legal tender.
The BoZ Chief Executive Officer who was speaking in an interview with ZANIS in Lusaka today, has since dismissed some media reports that some parts of the country have run-out of coins in circulation.
“It’s not true that we have run-out of coins and there are no coins in some districts. You might be aware that for two decades, there were no coins being used it’s only this time now when the Patriotic Front government has re-introduced the coins through the new rebased currency policy from higher to lower notes. I attribute this to psychology which needs to clear in people when using coins,” Dr Gondwe said.
Dr Gondwe has advised members of the public against keeping coins in their homes but use it in buying commodities so that the coins could be put in circulation.
“Don’t keep coins in your homes but please, use them to buy goods so that they can be circulated. We have been sending our team to rural areas such as Nabwalya so that no-one is disadvantaged,” he said.
Dr Gondwe disclosed that the Central Bank has collected 94 percent of the old kwacha notes and only remained with six percent yet to be collected.
He added that the Central Bank has been deploying its staff to rural areas so that the people are not disadvantaged.
Dr Gondwe has also advised people not to cling to old currency notes but take them to commercial banks and exchange them for rebased ones without any charges.
On the media, the Central Bank Chief implored Journalists to write more stories on the new rebased currency.
“You the media help us to disseminate this information on rebased currency so that members of the public are educated about the new money in circulation,” he said.
Recently, the business community in Kalabo district of Western province complained of serious shortage of coins that were scarcely in circulation in the district.
Kalabo Merchants Association Spokesperson Samuel Masiye said both one Kwacha and fifty ngwee coins had run-out forcing customers to unintentionally buy small items whenever change was not available.
And, MMD Sinda Member of Parliament Levy Ngoma complained to government in Parliament last week that Eastern province had also run out of coins.
But Deputy Minister of Finance Keith Mukata announced last Friday that in April this year, 61,956,000 coins were made at a cost of US$1.05 million that were delivered to BoZ.