Freetown, SIERRA LEONE – The Governor of the Central Bank Ibrahim Stevens has told journalists that there is enough money to complete the transition from the old to new Leones.
The Governor disclosed that the old notes ceased to be legal tenders on the 31st of December. He however assured the public that those who still have the old notes should not panic because they can exchange them at any commercial bank of financial institution “at zero cost.”
He explained that they have agreed that there should be no pre-condition for those who want to exchange their old notes for new ones.
The Governor emphasised that on the note it is written that they “promise to pay” the value on the note, adding that and “we intend to keep that promise.”
He said the transition period for the exchange of notes ends on the 31st of March when people can walk into any commercial bank and exchange their old notes.
After 31st March he said effectively the 1st of April the old notes can only be exchanged at the Bank of Sierra Leone or any of the Apex banks and at the Post Office.
In order to cater for the people upcountry he disclosed that they asked each of the Chiefs in the Chiefdoms to provide four people they will work with to help in their sensitization drive.
Furthermore he revealed that they have been innovative in their approach and have introduced mobile changing facilities.
Governor Stevens said the “intention is to make sure this transition is seamless uncomplicated and successful.” He emphasised that it is more a civic activity more than a financial activity.”
Questioned whether there is room for an extension of the deadline, the Bank Governor emphatically said “No.” Questioned why their first attempt at this exercise failed and why they are now succeeding, the Governor could only say that they have planned well. KXL/4/1/2023