The pula is the official currency of Botswana since 1976 when it replaced the South African rand at par. The name is derived from the word “pula”, which means rain in the Setswana language. The Bank of Botswana introduced the first notes in denominations of 1, 2, 5 and 10 pula, followed by 20 pula in 1978. The 50 pula was introduced in 1990, followed by the 100 pula note in 1993. In 2009, the Central Bank of Botswana introduced a new banknote series adding the 200 pula note.
The 100 Botswana pula note front design features the portrait of Sebele I (1841 – 1911), was a chief of the Kwena (a major Tswana), Bathoen I (1845-1910) was a kgosi (paramount chief) of the Ngwaketse people and Khama III (1837 – 1923), was the Kgosi (meaning king) of the Bangwato people. The three chiefs are recognized for their trip to Great Britain in the 1890s and saved the British protectorate Bechuanaland, Botswana’s predecessor, ensuring the country’s identity, avoiding absorption by expansionist forces in the decade. The national coat of arms and a stylized circle with the illustration of a diamond complete the design on this side of the note. The reverse of the note depicts a female diamond grader examining pieces of rough diamond, a stylized circle with the illustration within a diamond, and in the background is an open-pit diamond mine. The lettering on this side of the note is presented in the Hausa language. This note is part of the 2009 – 2012 series, and its color is slate black, blue, violet and ochre on a multicolor underprint.
Text: Bank of Botswana, Minister of Finance, Governor, This note is legal tender for One Hundred Pula, Pula, Banka Ya Botswana, De la Rue 2014, 100