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Traders lament over rise in prices, low sales

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By Chukwuemerie Anyene

The hike in the prices of many staple food items has resulted in low patronage of sellers of such items in different markets. Orient Daily gathered that sellers are hardly patronised as customers showed they could not cope with the price increases.

Peace Innocent, who sells onions at the Eke Awka market, lamented that “One basket of tomato used to sell for 25,000 naira but is now sold at between 28,000 naira and 30,000 naira.”

It was the same with Chukwuma Chukwurah, a supermarket owner who said that “What is not normal is onions, tomatoes and oil. We face high prices of onion, red/groundnut oil and tomato, both tin and fresh.” “Four gallons of red oil is now 20,000 while groundnut oil is 11,700 naira. Beans is virtually a no-go area,” he said.

Uju, the daughter of Chukwurah Chukwuma, said a six-piece pack of groundnut oil, earlier sold at 12,000 naira, now sells at 16,000 naira. The biggest size of tin tomato, once sold at 1,300 naira, went up to between 2,500 naira and 2,700 naira. “A bag of beans is 35,000,” she complained.

“Now that things are costly, those that used to sell one bag of beans within three days cannot do so any longer. Some buyers will come with their list but are forced by the price increase to forgo most items on their list, cutting down on the quantity of items they buy.”
She referred to the plight of university lecturers saying “where will those (lecturers) who have not been paid since February find the money to spend?

Onwe Elizabeth, an onion seller, blamed the price hike on the hoodlums who hijacked the #EndSARS protest. “One bag of onions sold at 20,000 naira before, skyrocketed to 80,000 naira,” she complained.

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