Business

Refusal to accept 1 Pesewa coin could land you in jail – Lawyer

1 Pesewa

One could be jailed a maximum of two years, fined GH¢ 6000 or both if he or she refuses to accept any of Ghana’s currencies including coins.

This came to light when Onua Business news spoke with a legal practitioner Daniel Osei Darko about the refusal of sections of the Ghanaian public to accept the one Pesewa coin as legal tender.

He says such acts will be a breach of the Bank of Ghana Act 612.

The one Pesewa coin came into being in 2007 when the Bank of Ghana undertook the currency redenomination, which became necessary as a result of years of decline in the value of the Cedi.

The one Ghana pesewa coin was the least currency issued.

A survey conducted by Onua Business revealed that most Ghanaians refuse to accept it as legal tender even though the Central Bank has confirmed on several occasions that the one pesewa is still legal tender.

Those who spoke to Onua FM  gave a myriad of reasons for their actions.

While some claim the brass nature of the coin is not appealing, others are of the view that the 1pesewa coin has no value as nothing in the country sells at a pesewa.

It is only given out as change at the malls in the cities as most of their products are priced with sub-units such as GH¢20.99p.

Pricing using smaller sub-units helps to ensure that an economy has enough supply of coins in circulation

It also helps in slowing down inflation as prices of goods will not rise at a significant rate as it would without subunits.

These advantages notwithstanding, pricing in subunits is not popular in Ghana.

For some individuals especially mothers, who spoke to the news team, the tiny nature of the coin poses a risk for children.

They believe if they have it in their possession, their children may swallow them.

Due to these factors, the Bank of Ghana made an attempt to modify the coin. This was contained in a press release on Tuesday, April 20, 2010.

The Central Bank said it had begun a survey to solicit ideas from the general public regarding the appropriate size for the coin.

A year later, the Governor of the Bank at the time, now Vice President Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur told journalist at a press briefing that samples of the new one pesewa coin had been made and the Central Bank was getting feedback from traders and buyers to ascertain which of the sampled coins will be preferred.

Six years on, the initiative is yet to see the light of day. The project was abandoned due to the lack of funds to mint the new one pesewa coin.

By Rosina Forster|Onua FM|3news.com|Ghana

Twitter: @3Newsgh

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