Nigerians Across Sectors Voice Concerns Over Soaring Living Cost

Jumoke Olasunkanmi, Favor Ozioma Ogbodo

In a series of interviews conducted by the African Health Report (AHR), individuals from different walks of life in Nigeria have expressed deep concerns over the escalating prices of essential goods and services, exacerbating the already challenging economic conditions faced by many.

Abdulrasheed Muhammad, a trader at the UTC market in Abuja, shared his struggles with the rising cost of living, particularly the steep increase in prices of household items. He explained how inflation has forced him to purchase goods on credit from suppliers due to the substantial surge in prices.

“It’s not easy; we are just managing, and the increment is times three,” lamented Muhammad. “I sell peak milk rolls for N1300, and it was formerly N450.

Muhammad (Photo credit: Olasunkanmi, Ogbodo / AHR)

He added, “Sometimes I have to buy on credit and pay back when I sell.”

Moreover, Muhammad highlighted the burden of increased rental fees for his shop space, with his rent skyrocketing by 125 per cent from N200,000 to N450,000 per year.

“Landlords also increased shop rent, previously I paid N200,00. 00 per year for my shop rent but I now pay N450,00.00 per year”.

Tunde Adeleye, a fashion designer and clothes vendor at UTC market, Garki, echoed Muhammad’s sentiments, emphasizing the dire need for government intervention to support struggling traders.

“It’s by God’s grace that I am surviving,” expressed Adeleye. “I buy materials at times for the normal rate. Just last week, when I went to Suleja to buy materials, I couldn’t purchase anything because of the high prices.”

Adeleke (Photo credit: Olasunkanmi, Ogbodo / AHR)

Adeleye further emphasized the debilitating impact of erratic power supply on his business operations, underscoring the urgent need for reliable electricity infrastructure.

“As I’m sitting here now, I cannot work because there’s no light (electric). They said the national grid has collapsed again.”

He also added that the inflation has also affected his house rent as he now pays almost double for rent per annum.

“I stay at Lugbe, my house rent has now increased from N250,00.00 to N400,00.00 for a one-bedroom apartment, things are not easy and if I can get any support from the government, I will appreciate it.”

Madam Ojo, a civil servant at Ekiti State University, also voiced her frustrations regarding the lack of effective government interventions. Despite promises of salary increments and palliative measures, she revealed that little to no relief has reached those in need.

“Things are not easy at all for me, though the government said there would be an increment in our salaries but we are getting to get that increase till now. Last year it was rumored that we would get palliative but it was only shared at the ministry level, we at the institution didn’t get any palliative.

When asked by AHR what she expects from the government, she said, “If the government can help us with palliative and be intentional in making sure we all get the palliative, it will go a long way.”

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