SA Gets Mandela Banknotes

The first banknotes featuring the face of Nelson Mandela have gone into circulation in South Africa.

They are the first South African notes to bear the image of a black person – they replace notes with wild animals and rural and industrial scenes.

President Jacob Zuma says the banknotes were a “humble gesture” to express South Africa’s “deep gratitude”.

Mr Mandela, 94, is one of the world’s best loved figures after spending 27 years in prison for fighting apartheid.

Reserve Bank governor Gill Marcus was the first to use the new banknotes when she spent 160 rand, about $18 (£12) on some nuts, beetroot, a watermelon and a cucumber at her local shop in the capital, Pretoria.

She said that Mr Mandela was delighted with the design.

She also noted that South Africa tries to update its currency every seven years for security reasons. The new design includes watermarks and a metal strip, while raised printing was added to assist the visually impaired.

Mr Mandela’s face is on one side of all the new banknotes, while the “Big Five” animals – lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo and elephant – remain on the reverse.

He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 for his campaign against white minority rule and was elected president the following year before stepping down after a single term.

Known affectionately by his clan name “Madiba”, he has now retired from public life.

BBC World Services

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Dean Popplewell

Dean Popplewell

Vice-President of Market Analysis at MarketPulse
Dean Popplewell has nearly two decades of experience trading currencies and fixed income instruments. He has a deep understanding of market fundamentals and the impact of global events on capital markets. He is respected among professional traders for his skilled analysis and career history as global head of trading for firms such as Scotia Capital and BMO Nesbitt Burns. Since joining OANDA in 2006, Dean has played an instrumental role in driving awareness of the forex market as an emerging asset class for retail investors, as well as providing expert counsel to a number of internal teams on how to best serve clients and industry stakeholders.
Dean Popplewell
Dean Popplewell

Latest posts by Dean Popplewell (see all)