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Gambia to phase out currency with Jammeh's head starting Feb. 2018

Gambia to phase out currency with Jammeh's head starting Feb. 2018

Gambia’s Central Bank will as from February 2018 begin phasing out a particular type of its currency – the dalasi – which has the head of former leader Yahya Jammeh on it.

The Central Bank of The Gambia had in November 2017 said it was going to revert to the notes known as ‘family notes’ which were being used before 2015 when the Jammeh notes were introduced.

The Standard news portal quoted Central Bank chief Bakary Jammeh as saying: “The currencies that[Jammeh] has his heads on were printed in 2015 and if you check currencies in circulation from 2014 to 2015, there are those that do not have his head.

So [Jammeh’s] face is gradually phasing out because notes that come in here do not go out again. And the new stock we will print will take us the whole of 2018 without his head.

So we can print those 2014 ones on which he does not have his head and get delivery in February,” Jammeh told journalists at the time.

“So [Jammeh’s] face is gradually phasing out because notes that come in here do not go out again. And the new stock we will print will take us the whole of 2018 without his head.

“Then we can have time to redesign the entire currency with new security features… We are thinking of standards such as the current bank notes of countries like South Africa and Ghana,” he added.

Jammeh had criticised his predecessor, Gambia’s first president Dawda Jawara, for printing notes with his face on it – that was done back in 1971. Years on, Jammeh also had his face on the dalasi, which noted the bank wants to completely phase out by end of 2018.

Jammeh is currently on exile in Equatorial Guinea after attempting to overturn an election loss in December 2016. A commission of enquiry set up by President Barrow has heard that Jammeh looted state funds and mismanaged the economy with unilateral decisions to technocrats.