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South Africa: Nelson Mandela bank notes enter circulation

Former South African president Nelson Mandela has been honoured with a place on the country’s bank notes.

Credit: Festival Karsh Ottawa

The new notes feature Mr Mandela on one side and images of South Africa’s so-called Big Five wild animals (lion; elephant; buffalo; leopard; rhinoceros) on the other.

South Africa’s Reserve Bank governor Gill Marcus was the first to use the notes, buying groceries from a shop in Pretoria earlier this week.

Ms Gill said “[Nelson Mandela] is delighted, very excited about it. We did show him the designs, the drafts and everything else,” she told South Africa’s Press Association.

“This is our way to pay tribute to him. Madiba [Mr Mandela’s clan name] does represent something special, not only in South Africa. He is really an extraordinary human being.”

Tim Harris, the shadow minister of finance with the Democratic Alliance, said they were a “wonderful tribute to a great man”, adding:”It is fitting that South Africans should be reminded of the former president’s legacy and his guiding principles as they save, invest and spend their money.”

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