A supposed ‘article’ about the introduction of new Bond Notes and new restrictions on international cards, that is going viral on social media today is fake. It’s especially going viral on WhatsApp and you may probably have received it already.
Techzim called RBZ to confirm the ‘fakeness’ of the story and indeed the people we spoke to there said they knew nothing about any new restrictions. (Update: The RBZ has issued a statement dismissing the fake news officially. Read it here.)
We were confirming the fakeness because really, even without asking anyone, it’s not hard to figure out that the story is fake. It’s surprising therefore that in a country priding itself on a high literacy rate (itself fake, turns out) such nonsense goes viral.
First, here is the fake news, then we quickly let you know why Techzim concluded this to be fake even before we contacted the RBZ:
RBZ TO INTRODUCE $10 , $20 & $50 BOND NOTES WITH EXPIRY DATES TO EASE CASH SHORTAGES FROM 15 MAY 2017
NO ZIMBABWEAN MASTERCARD , VISA CARD AND MAESTRO TO BE USED OUTSIDE THE COUNTRY WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF RBZ WITH EFFECT FROM 15 MAY 2017
……GOVERNOR RAPS GOVERNMENT AGENCIES FOR NOT BANKING CASH ESPECIALLY THE POLICE
HARARE: Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr. John Mangudya has announced the introduction of higher denominated Bond Notes .
Speaking at a Press Conference this morning in Harare the Apex Bank Governor said Cash crisis is more than a crisis and needed a holistic approach from all stakeholders hence they are going to introduce Higher Denominated Bond Notes with Expiry dates and that all Local issued MasterCards , Visa Cards and Maestro are not going to function outside the country without the approval of the Apex Bank.
“We are in a Catch 22 situation here , many Government Agencies are not banking Cash especially the Police . I have to admit it here in the public Domain that Cash Crisis is more than a Crisis and needs a holistic approach. Some Government Agencies which collect revenue especially the ZRP are not banking money (sic)….” Fumed the Central Bank Governor
” With immediate effect no Foreign Card is going to be used without the approval of the RBZ , we are going to issue expiring Bond Notes in the Denominations of $10 , $20 and $50 respectively so as to ease the Cash Crisis especially to give money to the farmers who are now becoming restive after earning the country Foreign currency ” said Dr. Mangudya
More Details to Follow………
Why it’s fake, so we don’t obliviously continue spreading articles like these to our WhatsApp friends:
- First, all 3 paragraphs are way too long and clearly written by someone who has challenges constructing English sentences. No editor, even at the local newspapers, would let such stuff through to publication.
- It’s alarmist. Why would the RBZ want to alarm anyone? In fact, the fear from pessimists is that the RBZ would naturally try to make things look normal even when there’s reason for alarm.
- The grammar and capitalisation of things are off. E.g. “…Apex Bank Governor said Cash crisis…”
- That link to the Herald is fake, and you don’t have to click on it to see. The Herald website just doesn’t have links structured that way.
What’s actually worrying is why anyone would do this?
We have enough problems already with a government and central bank that many people don’t trust. We have enough problems having to read ‘official’ newspapers we can’t trust anymore. Why would any Zimbabwean want to cause further confusion?
Now read a true story: Electronic money now 70% of all payments in Zimbabwe… and other central bank updates
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