Kampala, Uganda | JULIUS BUSINGE | In the past few days social media has been awash with pictures of currency notes with political messages written on by suspected supporters of President Yoweri Museveni and Kyadondo East Member of Parliament, Robert Kyagulanyi (Bobi Wine).
The notes in question are of Uganda shillings and United States Dollars.
The targeted politicians had not yet come out to speak about this new type of political support by the time we posted this story.
Instead, Bank of Uganda Governor Emmanuel T. Mutebile, the custodian of the Uganda Shilling notes has roared in a Dec. 10 statement.
“Bank of Uganda (BoU) is by law the only authority that can issue currency in Uganda and that includes the power to determine the features that can appear on any currency note or coin. The Bank has noted with concern the several social media postings circulating images of Uganda’s currency notes with hand written political campaign messages,” the statement reads in part.
Mutebile added: “This is to advise members of the public that stamping, writing, and /or markings on currency notes interferes with the security features that are useful in establishing the authenticity of the genuine currency notes. Stamping, writing/or marking on bank notes or coins also amounts to defacing which exposes the holder of such a note or coin to the risk of loss of its value.”
The public is, therefore, strongly warned against the use of currency notes for any other purpose other than for making or receiving payment(s) and the public is also advised to accept only those notes that bear features as designed by Bank of Uganda, he added.
He said that individuals involved in the defacing, and/or those accepting defaced notes, risk losing the value of their banknotes.
Going forward, Mutebile said, Bank of Uganda assures the general public that it is committed to the preservation of the integrity and value of the currency of the Republic of Uganda.
This comes at a time supporters of the two politicians continue to demonstrate their backing ahead of the 2021 general elections.