Xmas: Abuja customers groan over increase in commodities’ price
A cross section of consumers at various markets in the FCT have lamented over the increase in prices of commodities, especially food items and other consumables, during the festive period.
The Abuja consumers expressed their dismay over the development in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria(NAN).
They told NAN correspondents, who went round major markets in Abuja metropolis on Friday, that marketers and traders were expected to reduce the prices of commodities during religious festive periods and not exploit the situation.
At Utako market, some customers complained on the increase in prices of food items, saying it was too high.
Mr Solomon Oigbochie, a businessman, who went shopping at Utako, said “prices of food stuff are too high especially during the Christmas and New Year season.
“A kilo of chicken now hovers between N900 and N1,000 compared to N350 and N500 few weeks back, same with other food items in the market.
“I believe it should not be like that because there is no much money in circulation, traders should try to be considerate when fixing prices on their goods,” Oigbochie said.
Similarly, Madam Bintu Mohammad, a civil servant, said “a basket of onion use to cost between N7,000 and N8,000 but now goes for N15,000, so, it is tough for people to cook with adequate ingredients.
“A piece of onion use to cost N30 to N50 before but it now cost N100 in the same market, government should know that Nigerians are not finding it easy to survive,” she added.
In a related development, Mrs Ayo Olujimi, a house wife, said the cost of fabric materials had increased while the tailors’ charges remain the same.
However, Mrs Grace Abulo, a frozen food seller in Wuse, said: “The cost of buying kilo of chicken has increased in all cold rooms around and they have few items.
“The dealers are saying scarcity in the cost of fuel has automatically affected the cost of bringing frozen foods from Lagos to Abuja and its environs.”
She also blamed the increase on high cost of foreign exchange.
Also, Malam Abubakar Gubio, a dealer in onions, said: “The scarcity of fuel is a major determinant in fixing prices of commodities that are not grown or produced around you.
“Cost of hiring trailer has highly increased in the last one month, so dealers had to choose between transporting goods to various markets at higher cost or stay out of business.
“We hope that things will change for better once government begin to ensure that fuel is sold at reasonable price across the country,” Gubio said.
NAN recalls that the Federal Government recently said it had paid petroleum products’ subsidy to the independent marketers.
NAN also recalls that the marketers had promised that petroleum products would soon be available in all filling stations because they had started robust distribution of the products.
NAN also reports that queues are disappearing at fuel stations within Abuja metropolis.