The Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) has cautioned the public to be vigilant during the four-month demonetization period in which the Central bank seeks to mop up 217 million pieces of the old Ksh 1000 notes; accounting for about 83% of total currency in circulation.
In a statement asking the public not wait until the 1st of October 2019 deadline, the banking sector umbrella body says Banks have anticipated this exercise and are ready to start the issuance of the new currency.
According to the association, banks also began the process of modifying their ATM machines and currency counters while coordinating with the Central Bank to ensure minimal disruption of regular services. A huge amount of cash is expected to be deposited in banks and multiple inter-bank transactions could ensue during the period.
“We also encourage banks, bank agents and retailers, as well as citizens in general, to be especially vigilant during this period as there may be attempts to launder illicit funds through the banking system during the exercise of replacing the old generation notes with the newly released ones, ” reads part of the statement.
Data from the lobby group shows that there are approximately 1,700 ATM machines; 780 branches; and 66 thousand bank agents across Kenya.
In a media briefing held on Monday, CBK Governor Dr Patrick Njoroge asked Kenyans holding more than Sh5 million to contact the Central Bank for an endorsement to get the new Sh1000 notes from banks.
As per the law, those making cash deposits of more than Ksh one million will be required to declare the source of funds as per the law.