Periods: Biafra

Biafran Currency

The currency of the breakaway Republic of Biafra between 1968 and 1970 was Biafran pound. The first Biafran banknote was introduced in 1968 which replaced the Nigerian currency. There were only two denominations in the first issue (five shillings and one pound) as the move was done to deflate the economy.

The two notes of the first series have a common front, although they are of different sizes and different colors. To the left of each note is a rising sun with a palm tree in the foreground, the value of the note is in a disc to the right. The remaining areas of the note are covered with patterns imitating intaglio engine-work (i.e. lines drawn by a geometric lathe). There is also the usual text associated with any bank note – the name of the country ‘Republic of Biafra’, the name of the bank ‘Bank of Biafra’, promise text and value. The notes are signed by the ‘Governor’ and a ‘Director’ of the Bank of Biafra.

On the back of the 5-shilling note is a picture of four Ibo girls, and surrounding the value of the note to the left is a manilla. The back of the 1-pound note carries the Biafran coat of arms above a wreath, and a ceremonial spear.