By Kebba AF Touray
Mr. Karamo Jawara, Director of Banking at the Central Bank of the Gambia, has said that no specific date has been fixed to withdraw the legal tender of the old currency notes.
He said this yesterday during an interview with this reporter, in response to the question whether the Bank has any specific date or time for the removal of the old notes from circulation.
He added: “The gradual removal of the old notes has started since the 6th of August 2019, but no date or time has been fixed for its removal from the economy”.
He explained that when the new notes were to be issued, they issued a press release stating that their process is going to be a co-circulation of both the new and old notes and that old notes will be gradually withdrawn till it is phased out of the economy.
“Our working process is to co-circulate and make gradual withdrawal of the old notes”, he reiterated.
He said the reason for co-circulation is because of the financial cost in printing the bigger volume, as well as the human resource cost, as it also requires many people to handle the returned notes.
“We also recommended to the commercial banks to withdraw weaker notes and re-issue and leave fit notes in circulation and that any weak note should be withdrawn”, he told this reporter.
“Immediate withdrawal will cause some economic challenges in a cash based economy like ours, wherein people all over the country use cash for transaction”, he said.
He added: “Logistically, it will be a challenge as Central Bank has only one outlet unlike the other banks that have many branches and outlets. This is why we want to co-circulate and accelerate in terms of withdrawing notes”.