Agbado

 

…traders blame hike in transport fare 

Adebayo Obajemu

Lagosians still reeking from the ravaging Coronavirus, boredom and hard living conditions now have their woes compounded by a steady, even if skyrocketing rise in prices of foods items across Lagos markets.

This is even as many companies are reportedly asking their workers to stay at home until further notice.

Adjusting to the new ‘ normal’ is proving difficult for many Lagosians.

Meanwhile, traders have blamed the price jump on the high cost of transportation and scarcity of some essential food items.

In a survey carried out by Business Hallmark, there is a noticeable increase in price of items such as palm oil, beans, pepper, onions, tomatoes, garri, and potatoes .

In a disturbing trend now emerging across the markets, a big bag of pepper is currently sold for an average of N15,000, which indicates an increase of 114.3% when compared to the pre-lockdown price of N7,000.

In the same vein, the price of a big bag of dry onions hiked by 30.77%, as it currently being sold averagely at N17,000.

Meanwhile, a basket of sweet potatoes which before the lockdown sold at N6000 now sells for an average of N15,000, marking a 150% increase .

Significant spike in price was also noticed in the following items:

• A 50kg bag of Royal Stallion rice currently selling for an average of N27,333, compared to an initial average of N26,167 recorded in March.
• A gallon of locally made palm oil (5 Litres) is currently sold for an average of N2,025, indicating a 22.73% increase compared to its initial price of N1,650. A 25-litre gallon of palm oil increased by 6.67% to sell for an average of N10,000 compared to N9,375.
• A 50kg bag of Mama Gold rice, which was initially sold for an average of N19,250 increased by 5.84% to an average of N20,375 while Mama’s Pride rice increased marginally to an average of N19,375.
• A 50kg bag of white beans, which was initially sold for an average of N18,250 in March, now sells for an average of N21,125. This indicates a 15.75% increase in price.
• Also, a big sized bag of brown beans recorded a 9.27% increase in price to sell for an average of N20,625 compared to an initial average of N18,875.
• An 80kg bag of garri (Ijebu) currently sells for an average of N13,000. This indicates a 94% increase compared to the initial average of N6,700 recorded in March.
• Also, a 50kg bag of white garri spiked by 50% to sell for an average of N11,250, while yellow garri (50kg) recorded 58.1% increase in price to sell for an average of N12,250 compared to a reference price of N7,750.
• A big basket of round shaped tomatoes, which was sold for an average of N5,500 in March, has risen significantly by 127.3% as it now sells for an average of N12,500.
• The price of fish also rose as a big sized Horse Mackerel (Kote) that was for an initial average of N525 is now sold for an average of N563, while Titus (Mackerel) fish is currently sold for an average of N575.
• A bag of yellow maize currently sells for an average of N14,000, compared to an average of N13,000 recorded in March, while a bag of white maize sells for an average of N13,750.

READ MORE: UPDATED: Nigeria’s inflation rate rises to 12.34% as COVID effects bite harder

However , inspite of significant increase noticed in some items, there is a silver linning as there was also a decrease in some such as the following items:

• A 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas is now being refilled for an average of N3,375. Indicating a 15.63% reduction in price from an average of N4,000 in March.
• Also, a 5kg cylinder of cooking gas is currently filled for an average of N1,375 compared to an average of N1,725 recorded in March.
• A big bag of melon seeds (egusi) currently sells for an average of 38,000. A 7.32% decrease in price compared to N41,000 recorded in March 2020.
• A tuber of yam is currently sold for an average of N1,250. Compared to initial value of N1,375. The price of yam reduced by 9.1% while a medium-sized tuber of