Yuletide : Prices Of Food Items Soar In Ibadan As Traders Lament Low Patronage

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    …transport fare doubles by 100%

    By Bode Akinbode, Ibadan

    As Christmas and New Year celebrations draw nearer, prices of food items have skyrocketed in most markets in Ibadan, Oyo State capital, according to WESTERNPOST survey.

    A market survey at the popular Bodija International Market,  Ibadan on Tuesday, revealed that prices of foodstuffs, which showed marginal increases during the last Sallah celebration, have increased beyond the reach of the average consumers.

    As a result, traders complained of low patronage as most of them believed that the festive season provides the opportunity to make huge profit, necessitating price hikes.

    Respondents that spoke to WESTERNPOST attributed the hikes to transportation fares, double-digit inflation, and the lack of disposable income.

    Items such as chicken, rice, vegetable oil, onions, pepper and other cooking ingredients have recently witnessed increase in prices.

    At the Bodija market, a bag of per boiled rice, which hitherto sells costs between N25,000 and N27, 000, now sells for between N28,000and N30,000, while a gallon of vegetable oil which before now sells for N24,000 is now  N28,500.

    Similarly, a gallon of palm oil which sold for N24,000 now costs between N25,600 in wholesale price, while retail price sells for N27,200 market price.

    An average live chicken sells for between N5,000 and maximum of N8,000 depending on the size. Other cooking seasonings such as Maggi pack which used to sell for N500 per pack is now being sold at N800.

    A basket of tomatoes now sells for between N16,000 and N20,000.

    A trader, Rashidat Oladele, said the demand for chicken and other foodstuffs was usually high during festive periods such as Christmas and the New Year.

    To cushion the effect of the high cost of foodstuffs and other items, the Oyo State Government had promised to pay 13th month salary to workers in its employ immediately after the Christmas festivity, in addition to their regular monthly salary which had been paid as of December 17.

    A civil servant, Mrs Oluwatomisin Adebayo said the sharp increase in the cost of food items is not unconnected with the high cost of transportation and the general economic situation in the country.

     

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