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First Nations Australians Will Be Featured Instead Of British Monarchs On The New Australian $5 Note

You won’t be seeing King Charles III on your note currency any time soon.

Following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) have been in discussions about how her image on Australia’s currency will be replaced.

Now, the entity has announced that the new $5 note will not feature her successor, King Charles III, but rather be designed in collaboration with First Nations Australians.

“The Reserve Bank has decided to update the $5 banknote to feature a new design that honours the culture and history of the First Australians,” the RBA explained in a statement.

“This new design will replace the portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.”

Queen Elizabeth II’s space on the $5 note will be updated to honour First Nations Australians. (Credit: Image: Getty)

The flip side of the $5 note is intended to remain the same, depicting Parliament House in Australia’s capital city, Canberra.

We do not know yet if it will be a person or a theme immortalized where Queen Elizabeth’s image once was, but the bank has said that it will be designed in tandem with First Nations Elders.

However, it will take a while for the design to be confirmed and the notes printed, with the RBA forecasting that it may take a number of years to come to fruition.

“In the meantime, the current $5 banknote will continue to be issued, it will be able to be used even after the new banknote is issued,” they explained.

The bank added that the decision to remove the British monarch from the note was made with the government’s support.

(Credit: Image: Getty)

It will not be the first acknowledgment of First Nations Australians on Australian currency, with David Unaipon, an indigenous inventor and writer featured on the yellow $50 note.

Unaipon, a Ngarrindjeri man, was largely self-educated and invented an innovative ‘perpetual motion’ shearing tool in 1909. He was also an advocate for First Nations people in the political space.

At this stage it appears that the effigy of King Charles III will continue to be stamped on Australian coins from this year.

The CEO of the Royal Mint, Leigh Gordon told earlier this year that until this image of the new King had been produced, the mint would continue using the standard 2022 Queen Elizabeth II coins.

Who Will Feature On Australia’s Currency Now?

(Credit: Image: Getty)

While changes have been announced to the $5 note, it does not appear that any of the other notes are up for review. They will continue to feature the following:

  • The $5 note will feature the new First Nations design and on the other side will be Parliament house.
  • The $10 note features Australian poet and ballad writer Banjo Patterson and on the other side is Australian poet, journalist and advocator, Dame Mary Gilmore.
  • The $20 note features successful businesswoman and shipping magnate Mary Reibey and on the other side is Reverend John Flynn who founded the first aerial medical service now known as the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
  • The $50 note features First Nations inventor David Unaipon and on the other side is Australia’s first female parliamentarian Edith Cowan.
  • The $100 note features famed soprano Dame Nellie Melba and successful military commander General Sir John Monash.

Buckingham Palace has not commented on the decision to remove the monarch from the note.

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