WINDHOEK: A campaign has been launched to raise awareness about the introduction of a new series of South African banknotes honouring former South African President Nelson Mandela.
The campaign is a joint initiative of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) and the Bank of Namibia (BoN).
Speaking at a media briefing here on Monday, SARB’s Head of Strategy and Communications Hlengani Mathebula said the campaign is aimed at educating and raising awareness about the new South African banknotes, which is legal tender in Namibia.
Mathebula said the new banknotes will come into circulation before the end of this year. The front of the new banknotes feature an image of Mandela, while the backside maintains the images of the ‘big five’ animals which appear on current banknotes. These include the rhinoceros on the R10 note, the elephant on the R20, the lion on the R50, the buffalo on the R100 and the leopard on the R200 note.
“The current and the new banknotes will co-circulate, and both are legal tender in Namibia,” he stressed.
Mathebula explained that the South African coat of arms is featured prominently in the top left-hand corner of all banknote denominations, and this symbol is also visible in the security thread as a holographic image.
The new banknotes feature translation of the words ‘South African Reserve Bank’ into two official South African languages on each banknote denomination. The translations featured on the back of the notes are Afrikaans and siSwati (R10 note), Setswana and isiNdebele (R20), isiXhosa and Tshivenda (R50), Sepedi and Xitsonga (R100) and Sesotho and isiZulu (R200).
The security features on the new banknote series can easily be identified by looking, feeling and tilting the notes. These include the watermark, micro-printing and unique numbering.
Mathebula added that when someone touches the new banknote, they should feel the raised printing which includes the denomination numeral, the main motif on the front of the new banknotes, the words ‘South African Reserve Bank’, the coat of arms and the motif on the back of the new banknote.
The new banknotes also have features for visually impaired users, such as raised lines on the bottom left and right-hand side on the front of each banknote.
When the notes are tilted, the security thread’s colour will change to the colour of the respective note. For the R10 note, the thread will change from magenta to green; for the R20 note, it will change from green to magenta; for the R50 from gold to magenta; for the R100 from red to blue; and for the R200 green to gold.
The coat of arms, the letters ‘SARB’ and a number can also be seen in the security thread.
Mathebula said the new banknote campaign will be publicised in the local print media, and through targeted road shows in Windhoek.
“Commercial banks, law-enforcement officials and other cash-handling institutions have been sensitised on the new banknotes through continuing training,” he noted.
The campaign forms part of a wider communication campaign launched in September by SARB Governor Gill Marcus, and extended to Namibia and other Common Monetary Area (CMA) countries where the Rand circulates. The CMA countries include Namibia, South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland.