Kenya has ushered in its ‘New Generation Coins’ that say goodbye to portraits of its Presidents and leaders in place of its famous wildlife.
Previously, Kenya’s coins featured the images of former Prime Minister Jomo Kenyatta, and ex-Presidents Daniel arap Moi and Mwai Kibaki.
Many Kenyans, however, saw this as a form of glorification and self-promotion. Furthermore, Moi had apparently broken his promise not to have his portrait printed on the country’s currency.
A new constitution formed in 2010, which was spurred by mounting public pressure, led to the decision that moving forward, Kenya’s currency would “not bear the portrait of any individual.”
The Central Bank of Kenya has seen this through by welcoming the images of Kenya’s lion, elephant, giraffe, and rhino to its newly minted coins, and will likely do the same for the country’s new notes.
Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta described the new coins as a “big change” that reflects how far the nation has come. The Central Bank explained that the choice to feature wildlife instead reflects the “physical expression to a newly reborn and prosperous” Kenya, as well as encourages greater care and respect for its environment.
[via BBC, video via Central Bank of Kenye, images via video screenshot]