Zamfara State residents have cried out over the constant increment in prices of foodstuffs and other essential commodities on a daily basis.
Investigations carried out by DAILY POST revealed that a plate of locally produced rice being sold at N1300 cost N650 a week ago.
According to a rice dealer, Mallam Ibrahim Mainasara, the rice farmers have been facing security challenges from the bandits terrorizing rural areas of the state, affecting farming in the rural areas.
“Farming used to be the pride of Zamfara State indigenes but that was then as farmers no longer face their farming activities due to banditry,” he lamented.
Mallam Mainasara further stated that those farmers who have the courage to continue their farming activities sell at exorbitant prices.
He explained that apart frоm the bandit attacks, the transportation crisis due to fuel scarcity has seriously escalated the prices of locally produced foodstuffs.
Another trader, Alhaji Umar Gusau who spoke with this medium said that other essential commodities have also been affected.
“It becomes unimaginable that a country that is endowed with many agricultural potentials could not feed its populace properly.
“There is no responsible government that can treat the issue of agriculture with a mere wave of the hand, that is Nigeria for you,” he said.
He said that many households now could not afford to buy meat as the prices of meat have become unaffordable for the common masses, saying that the same thing applied to breakfast which he said many households have stopped taking rich food.
“How many loaves of bread can somebody buy to make breakfast for a family of ten or more when a small loaf of bread is being sold at the cost of N300?” he asked.
Further investigation revealed that those who sell locally produced foodstuffs like egusi, ogbono, crayfish, snails etc brought to the state from the eastern part of the country were also lamenting that the business has been moving with the lowest ebbs as people were not ready to buy due to the deep inflation.
According to one of such traders, Mr Ejike Maduka, “I have not gone to the east to buy the food items since the beginning of this year because there were no buyers, talk less of getting money to buy more of the items”
“Even if one decides to change business, it is the same thing as the escalation of prices affects all the foodstuffs and other essential commodities.”
DAILY POST visited a section where fowls were being sold at Tudun Wada market in Gusau, the state capital, but met some of the sellers sleeping as there were no serious market activities.
When asked, some of the traders told this medium that they hardly sell two chickens in a day, pointing out that the consumers have been complaining of the high cost of living in the state coupled with money that was not in circulation.
The chicken dealers confirmed to this medium that the inflation crisis was traced to the banditry activities that have been ravaging the state for a decade now, saying that the traders in the urban areas highly depend on the rural farmers for supply of the locally produced foodstuffs.
DAILY POST reports that some of the non-indigines have been shifting their bases due to banditry activities to other states of the federation due to the high cost of living ravaging the entire Zamfara State.
According to one Mr Obiora Nnamani, the deep economic hardship being faced by the people would definitely force non-indigines to shift from the state, coupled with the political crisis in the state.
“Nobody knows what would happen during the 2022 general elections in the state as the situation is turning out to be politics of bitterness, I have concluded arrangements to move down with his family to the east before the elections,” he said.