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Kenya’s Blockchain Task Force Advises Gov’t to Replace Cash With Digital Currency

Last Updated June 14, 2024 8:40 AM
Stephen Samuels
Last Updated June 14, 2024 8:40 AM

The chairman of the Distributed Ledgers and Artificial Intelligence taskforce, Bitange Ndemo has advised the Kenyan government to tokenize its economy in order to deal with the increasing issues of corruption and uncertainty.

Ndemo made known his opinion during a meeting between the Kenyan ICT ministry stakeholders and members of the private sector. He noted that the East African country needs a digital currency that would stand side-by-side with fiat.

“We must begin to tokenize the economy by giving incentives to young people to do things which they are paid through tokens that can be converted to Fiat currency,” Ndemo said

Kenya is Open to Innovation

Kenya is one of Africa’s leading countries in terms of blockchain and cryptocurrency development. Some of the region’s largest blockchain remittances originated from Kenya. Beyond remittances, the East African nation is notable for the friendly environment that it provides for not just blockchain, but technological innovations in general.

Active legislative discussions over blockchain and cryptocurrency related programs show the interest that the Kenyan government have in blockchain technology. This is evident in the government’s effort towards finding proper regulatory frameworks for the technology over time.

In August 2018, the country’s electoral commision even showed signs of adopting blockchain technology in voting processes.

According to Ndemo, Tokens are like bonga points given by mobile operators or loyalty points given at the supermarkets, it can be converted to coins and used to buy goods of any choice by the user.

More Education Needed

The Distributed Ledgers and Artificial Intelligence task force which was inaugurated in March has earlier recommended a Central Bank Digital Currency to operate in fixed nominal terms and as a valid legal tender. This is an idea that has been abolished, or rather sidelined for the time being.

ICT’s Jerome Ochieng, however, noted that there needs to be an increased level of awareness about tokens and how to use them before any major steps can be taken. He sees public enlightenment in this area as a very crucial factor that must be put in place before any advanced government action.

“We are not very enthusiastic at the moment, of course, it will come, but we first want people to understand use of tokens”, says Ochieng.

Ndemo’s task force continues in its assignment to determine the appropriate and implementable use cases of blockchain technology within the Kenyan technological and economic environment. This will further enhance the country’s position as a hub for innovation and a fast developing nation, especially when it comes to innovation.

Featured image from Shutterstock.