The kwacha is the official currency of Malawi since 1971 when it replaced the Malawian pound. The name kwacha is derived from the Chichewa word meaning “it has dawned”, and the Reserve Bank of Malawi is the official issuing entity. In 1971, the first notes were issued in denominations of 50 tambala, 1, 2 and 10 kwacha, followed by 5 kwacha in 1973, 20 kwacha in 1983, 50 and 100 kwacha in 1993, 200 kwacha in 1995, 500 kwacha in 2001, 1000 kwacha in 2012 and 2000 kwacha in 2016.
The 20 Malawian kwacha note front design features Inkosi Ya Makhosi M’mbelwa II – Lazalo Mkhozo Jere (1902-1959), who was the Supreme Chief of the North or Jere Ngoni in 1928 and one of the five Chiefs who went to protest the imposition of the Federation of Nyasaland and Rhodesia in 1953 at Lancaster House, the United Kingdom in 1953. The main design is presented against a background with the headquarters of the Reserve Bank of Malawi in Lilongwe (capital city) under a great bright sun. A sketch of the Malawi map, a sketch of a cichlid fish with the denomination inside (two more without the denomination), and illustrative figures of three fishermen fishing in a lake complete the design of this side of the note. The reverse of the note illustrates a scene representing Social Development (sub-themed Education); the Machinga Teacher Training School, there is a pile of books with a graduation cap on top, and the Reserve Bank of Malawi symbol. This note is part of the 2014 -2020 series, and its color is purple and orange on a multicolor underprint.
Text: Reserve Bank of Malawi, Promise to pay the bearer on demand the sum of K20 Issued Under The Reserve Bank of Malawi Act, Governor, 1st January 2017, Twenty Kwacha, 20 Kwacha, Inkosi Ya Makhosi M’mbelwa II (Lazalo Mkhosi Jere), Machinga Teachers Training College.