New Mandela Banknotes

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Reserve Bank Governor Gill Marcus and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

For most of this year the public has been awaiting the new banksnotes featuring national (and international) icon Tata Madiba. Early this year the Reserve Bank of South Africa announced that they would be changing our banknotes, which bore our proud Big Five since 1992, to bear the face of Mr Nelson Mandela. This is what you'll need to know going forward.

1. Each of the redesigned notes will bear Madiba's face and have the original Big Five animal that was on the note on the reverse. The notes will still be the same size as the ones we've been using.

2. The banknotes will still have the same denominations of R10, R20, R50, R100 and R200. There have been no reports on whether on not a R500 note is in production.

3. The reserve bank hopes that the new banknotes will be in circulation by the end of the year.

4. When the new Mandela Banknotes are in circulation the old notes with still be legal until such a time they are phased out. The phasing out process is particularly integral to a smooth transition  because the rand is also used in a few of our neighbouring countries.

5.  The banknotes use Madiba's face from 1990, when he was first released from prison.

6. They still carry the security measures we've become used to (touch, watermark and exture) as well as new methods for detecting counterfeit money.

This would be even better and much more enjoyable to celebrate  if our currency hadn't recorded a historic low a couple of weeks ago. But I love Tata, he's one of my favourite people and I think that this is a great way to honour him.

I enjoyed reading this article about when Governor Marcus went shopping with the new notes.


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