The Zambian Kwacha is the official currency in Zambia since 1966, and its name derived from the word for “dawn” (Nyanja, Bemba, and Tonga language), referring to the Zambian nationalist slogan; “new dawn of freedom”. After the country became independent of the United Kingdom in 1964, the Bank of Zambia issued the first Zambia currency called “Zambia pound”, which replaced the Rhodesia and Nyasaland pound. In 1966, the parliament announced the main currency changed to Kwacha and all the currencies circulating before 1968 were withdrawn. The Bank of Zambia issued a coin series in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10 and 20 ngwee, followed by the 50 ngwee coin in 1979.
Three years later, the 5 and 10 ngwee coins production ceased, followed by 20 ngwee the following year. The 1 kwacha coin was introduced in 1989, followed by the 25 and 50 ngwee and the 5 and 10 kwacha coins in 1992. These coins were only issued one year, and their production was stopped due to the economic crisis in the country. These coins are legal tender. However, they do not represent a relevant nominal value, so they are not for commercial use. They are generally used as souvenir merchandise for tourists. In 2013, the government announced and introduced a new series in denominations of 5, 10, 50 ngwee and 1 kwacha.
The 1 Kwacha coin front design features the National Coat of Arms (consist of the African fish eagle, the beak and the hoe, the shield with a wavy pattern that the Victoria Falls River, which is held by the common Zambian woman and man, a meadow base with a factory figure representing mining and agriculture, a zebra and under the national motto “One Zambia, one nation”, with a corncob the middle) and the issue date. The reverse coin design illustrates an Chaplin’s barbet or Zambian barbet on a tree branch and the denomination. This coin is part of the 2012 – 2017 series, its rim is fluted, and its color is silver.
Text: Zambia, One Zambia, One Nation, 2012, One Kwacha, K1.