Gradually, Then Suddenly
ZIM2e, 1994, 5 ZWD

Slot Comment:

1st Dollar Banknote BA Prefix

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Note Details


Set Details

Note Description: 5 Dollars 1994 - Sign. #3
Grade: 66 EPQ
Country: Zimbabwe
Note Number: ZIM2e
- Wmk: Zimbabwe Bird Type B
Certification #: 8072376-093
Owner: Revenant
Set Category: World
Set Name: Gradually, Then Suddenly
Slot Name: ZIM2e, 1994, 5 ZWD
Research: See PMG's Census Report for this Note

Owner's Description

The P-2e is an interesting note (one of a few 1994 issues, along with the P-1d). It’s a somewhat rarer variety than the P-2d, but when you look at the two, on the surface, they look pretty much the same. The difference between the P-2d and the P-2e (and the difference between the P-1c and the P-1d) is that the earlier issue uses the first version of the Zimbabwe bird watermark while the later issue uses the newer, second version of the Zimbabwe bird watermark that was used in later issues, including the Series 2 notes. Zimbabwe started rolling out the Series 2 notes in 1994 and 1995 (and retired the $2 denomination, replacing the P-1 note with a $2 coin). So, between their replacement mid-year of the prior issues with the old watermark and their subsequent replacement with completely new designs, these notes were not in print long. The P-1c is fairly common, almost as common as the P-1b, but it’s just a watermark that separates it from the P-1d – which is one of the rarest and most desirable notes in any Zimbabwe note collection.

And now for some history on the country and the Reserve Bank and not just these particular note varieties:

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act provides for a board of directors and a governor. The governor, assisted by three deputy governors, is responsible for the day-to-day administration and operations of the bank. The governor and his three deputies are appointed by the president for five-year terms that may be renewed. The governor also serves as chairman of the board. The board's membership includes the three deputies and up to a maximum of seven other non-executive directors, intended to represent key sectors of the economy.

As in the United States, with the Federal Reserve, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s most important role is to create and enact monetary policies. The bank is also supposed to be the only producer of Zimbabwe’s bank notes and coins and it is supposed to regulate the amount of money in circulation. However, it failed miserably at regulating and protecting the currency – pretty much since its inception – and, as a result, the country hasn’t issued any of its own currency or bank notes in 10 years except for some $2 and $5 bond notes that are pegged to the US dollar. The Reserve Bank also looks after the country’s gold reserves, provides the government with banking services and serves as an advisor to the government on financial and economic policy.

The Bank’s complete failure to maintain stable economic conditions and to deal with the inflation and later hyperinflation that wrecked the country’s economy, economists have suggested that the RBZ should be abolished while others suggest that it should be reformed.

The following is a list of the past and present Governor’s:
Desmond C. Crough (1980-1982?)
Kombo Moyana (1983 – August 1993)
Leonard L. Tsumba (August 1993 – 2003)
Charles Chikaura (Acting, 2003)
Gideon Gono (1 December 2003 – 30 November 2013)
John Mangudya (1 May 2014 – present as of March 2019)

The signatures of these men are the ones you’ll see on the various banknotes issued by the RBZ from 1980. Dr Gideon Gono’s name / signature appears on by far the greatest number of notes and denominations as he was the governor all through the worst of the hyperinflationary period when the 2nd dollar bearer checks, the 3rd dollar banknotes and the 4th dollar banknotes were issued. Some sources on Zimbabwean bank notes break the notes into groups or “series” based on the RBZ bank governor serving at the time the note was issued.

The Zimbabwe regular banknotes feature an image of the Chiremba balancing rock formation - three balancing rocks that are in Matobo National Park. The image of the stones was chosen as a metaphor for balancing development and environmental protection following the country’s transition from white-ruled Rhodesia to the majority black ruled Zimbabwe. The Matobo Hills are composed entirely of granite and it makes for some highly unique and interesting formations.

The back of the note shows a village scene with a couple of villagers, seemingly with the intent of glorifying or highlighting life in rural areas of Zimbabwe.

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