By :Lateefat Egunsola, Oluwafunmilayo Omotosho, Fasilat Oluwuyi and Olabisi Oladosu
Speaking with PLATFORMTIMES, Mrs. Akinrinola, beverages marketer, said, “The goods are not moving because there is no money and it is expensive, with the situation in the country economy which involves with everything. Last year is clearly different from this year. This year is really terrible; there is no patronage at all.
“When there is no money, we cannot see any customer, in this particular Ogun state, it is a civil servant state. Without the civil servant money, there is nothing in this state. Unlike Lagos state where people of different categories are, money comes from different places. So everybody is just lamenting.
“For example during the past years, we would have started packing hampers for people, but, now there are no traces of hampers this year at all. Before hamper of N2, 500 is much but now, if you pack a hamper of N10, 000 for a person, the person will prefer to be given an envelope of N10, 000. As at November till date the smallest pack of Milo which was N300 is now N1, 000, while groundnut of N250 is now N400. Do you think people will buy that? It is really expensive, so people should cut their cloth according to their cloth not size again, but I pray that things will be good at the end."
Akinrinola also said,“Before Christmas or let me say generally since the beginning of this year, the prices of goods are much, the soap I usually sell at the rate of N50 is now N100 and the one of N20 is now N70,but all they say is that the goods are expensive because of increase in dollar, pounds and people cannot afford to buy it. I don’t think people will enjoy Christmas this season because of the hike in price of goods."
Also speaking,Toheeb Adeniran, a meat seller, said that the status of economy in the county has really affected the sale of goods, adding that “there is no money, everything is just dull, we didn’t even know that there is Christmas in town”.
Mrs. F.A Adeosun, a fish monger, also said "The fish that we buy at the rate of N10,000 is now N25,000 per slate and the round fish which was N11,000 is now N19,000 to N20,000, things are expensive”
Mrs. Tope Ayodele, a pepper seller, said,“I don’t think people will celebrate Christmas this year because so many things have changed. The rate in which we buy a basket of pepper has tripled. A basket of pepper which was bought for N700 now is N2, 000. Since the time I started this trade, that’s five years ago, a basket of pepper has never reached that rate, I hope God help us in this country. ”
Mrs. Temitope Ayomide, an ingredient seller, said “ the price of everything has changed, for example the price of big Farrow’s pack was N4,000 and sold at the rate of N200 now it is N8,000 and it is too expensive, also chicken flavor was N5,000 but it is now around N7,500 so who is going to buy that kind of a thing. There are no traces of Christmas; I don’t think people will celebrate it this year.”
Mrs. Bolaji Kazeem, a marketer, appealed to the government to open up the borders so that there will be importation of rice into the country so that things can be a little stress-free.
“The closing of the borders have made rice and groundnut oil expensive also the exchange rate is part of the problem facing the increase in rice and there is something I actually don’t understand the local rice is much expensive than the polished rice. Local rice is sold at the rate of N800 and polished rice for N500 per measure popularly called 'kongo'. As at January, rice was sold for N6, 000 now it is N14, 000 to N15, 000 while, groundnut oil was N6, 600 now N7, 600 so everything is expensive.
“The expensiveness of rice has also affected the price of beans in the market. Beans doesn’t concern dollar yet the price of rice has affected it, fertilizer is not expensive so why is beans expensive, at least if other things are expensive the people should at least be able to buy beans for Christmas if they can’t afford to buy rice, but the cheapest beans in the market is sold at the rate of N400 to N500, yet there is no market.” She said