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Bank of Uganda bans banknote gifts

The Bank of Uganda has cautioned Ugandans against defacing the national currency by using bank notes as gifts.

Bank of Uganda has banned

The trend of florists designing bouquets from bank notes became popularised in recent months in the country.

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It became even more prominent in the lead-up to this year’s national examinations as parents and guardians gifted these bouquets to their candidate children to wish them success.

But the central bank warned on Wednesday, that such practices constitute mutilation and defacing, and compromise the integrity of the Uganda Shilling currency, which is illegal.

Florists, designers, gifting stylists, and their clients are particularly cautioned to avoid using currency banknotes and coins in making bouquets or any like creations,” said Kenneth Egesa, the Bank’s spokesperson.

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This mainly involves the use of brand-new banknotes that are stuck together using glue, cello tape, pins, clips, and other adhesives or fasteners as part of floral bouquets for various social events and gifting ceremonies.

This practice destroys the utility of banknotes making them unusable in cash processing and distribution equipment such as cash counting machines and ATMs, which are a critical part of the cash distribution systems. It also results in the premature withdrawal from circulation and replacement of banknotes at an avoidable cost to the public.”

The Bank of Uganda’s statement comes weeks after the Ministry of Education also issued a warning to parents about these cash gifts to their candidate children.

Minister for Higher Education, Hon. John Chrysestom Muyingo warned that this might demoralise other learners whose parents cannot afford such gifts.

The Minister promised to work with the Bank of Uganda to give guidance on this practice.

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The Central Bank said in its statement yesterday, that although it is not against using cash as a gift, this exchange should conform to the normal use of currency to facilitate payment transactions.

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