With the naira currency in free fall and inflation soaring, few Nigerians can escape the country’s economic troubles — and that includes Muslims preparing for Eid al-Adha.
Livestock traders and buyers said the sale of rams for the annual festival of sacrifice have dropped sharply compared with last year, as Nigerians look to prioritise spending.
“Sales have stalled,” complained Ibrahim Shuaibu, a ram trader at the Hauren Shanu livestock market on the outskirts of Kano, the commercial hub and biggest city in Nigeria’s mainly Muslim north.
“Last year by this time I had sold more than 30 rams but I have so far sold not more than four this season,” he told AFP on Friday, his face sweaty from the scorching sun as he waited for customers.
– Reduced to a trickle –
Animals are slaughtered during Eid to signify followers’ submission to Allah, with the meat shared among family, friends and the needy.
The wealthy often buy several rams to distribute and the run-up to the festival is normally the busiest time of year for livestock traders.
“One person would come and buy 50 rams at once to distribute as gifts to people,” said ram vendor Abubakar Ibrahim, at Kano’s Hotoro market.
“But up till now not a single person has bought five rams at a go from this market.”
Last year, there were more than 500 sales but as of Friday there had only been 20, he said.
Trader Sabiu Ibrahim Hotoro said buyers were coming in “trickles”.
Another, Mudassir Mustapha, predicted: “More than 35 percent of people may not be able to offer a ram sacrifice this year due to the recession.”
Nigeria officially plunged into recession last month after the second successive quarter of negative growth.
The fall in global oil prices has hit the crude-reliant economy hard for the last two years, squeezing government revenue, weakening the naira and forcing up inflation to more than 17 percent.
Foreign exchange has become scarce and investment stalled. This week, the government approved a plan to seek loans from organisations such as the World Bank.
– Prices cut –
A ram typically costs between 30,000 naira and 70,000 naira ($95-$220, 84-195 euros), depending on size. Traders have slashed prices to attract buyers — but with little effect.
“Rams are relatively cheaper now but lack of money is preventing people from buying,” said Mustapha.
For people like estate agent Babangida Magaji, the price cut has made no difference because of the overall rise in the cost of living.
“The prices of almost everything have gone up with no corresponding increase to my earnings and this gobbles up whatever I would have used to buy a ram,” he said.
“I’ll have to choose between buying food and essential items for my family and paying my children’s school fees or buying a ram for the festival.
“I have to prioritise and buying a ram comes last.”
– Bull sales –
While ram sales have slumped this year, those for bulls are relatively healthy, as some Kano residents look to get round their financial restraints by pooling resources to buy a bigger animal.
“The number of people contributing money to buy bulls to share has gone up and this is due to little cash in the hands of the people,” said cattle trader Kabir Mansur Ashura.
“Our sales have gone up by 20 percent,” Ashura’s brother and partner, Idris, chipped in.
Abdullahi Lawan and three neighbours opted to buy a bull for the feast to save money.
Lawan said he used to buy two rams for the feast. This year he would have needed about 100,000 naira ($285) for the two rams.
But he said: “The quarter of the bull I get at 25,000 naira is more than the meat of the two rams I buy at 100,000 naira put together.
“I lose on the spiritual side for not killing ram for the sacrifice but I gain on the meat. I have no other choice”.
More from my site
- Eid-el-Kabir: Ram sellers lament low patronage in Kaduna
- Move your cattle out of FCT, Minister orders herdsmen
- Bleak Sallah as Muslims prioritise school fees over rams
- Why Buhari Should Not Officially Devalue The Naira
- Enugu institutes N60m traders’ empowerment scheme
- Nigeria will overcome economic challenges, says Sen. Wamakko
- Dollar rate: The worst time for Nigerian students to study abroad
- Fuel Price ‘Nigerians should prepare for increase,’ Marketers say
- Naira reverses loss after dropping to 500/dollar
- We want Fridays work-free for Muslims — MURIC Director, Akintola
- Jungle justice bill should also catch Buhari
- Remote Control Furore as 78-yr-old man slits his throat in Kano
- Kerry warns against use of ‘excessive force’ on Boko Haram
- Jonathan’s govt better than Buhari’s administration
- Jonathan’s govt better than Buhari’s administration – Mairiga
- [Updated] Police kill 10 Shiites in Kano
- FG, BOI To Disburse N140bn To Petty Traders, Artisans Nationwide
- 48 HOUR FILM PROJECT COMES TO LAGOS
- Street trading, social justice and morality
- Nasarawa herdsmen set up committee over clashes with farmers
- Naira tumbles to 402 on dollar scarcity
- Naira plummets to all-time low of 472/dollar
- Naira depreciates against dollar
- Naira to plunge further on high dollar demand
- Nigeria struggles as Buhari wrangles with budget, naira
- Bayelsa chief sanctions those calling for GEJ’s second coming
- Free Slimtea Deal Made possible by Nigerian Ambassador
- Why Nollywood Actress Genny Uzoma is Unfulfilled
- NNPC Names 39 Crude Oil Off-Takers For 2017/2018
- Fuel Scarcity: Sokoto govt to sell petrol to motorists
- $30bn loan: Sanusi hits Buhari’s govt, says FG lacks right policies
- Buhari can’t solve Nigeria’s problems without an economic team — Shehu…
- NDLEA nabs man with N9.8m fake currency
- Ayo Makun talks on Film Collaboration In Nollywood
- “we Are Suffering,” Kano Residents Chant During VP Osinbajo’s Visit
- Oil prices rebound from sharp losses
- [BREAKING] Three injured as fire razes multi-million naira Asaba market
- Kogi women embrace family planning as economic hardship bites harder
- Buhari feeling Nigerians’ pains — Osinbajo
- Nigeria may not move out of recession in 2017 – MAN
- Obaseki pledges to expand Edo spare parts market
- October 1 Tragedy: Boko Haram Kills 11 In Adamawa Villages
- “My Wife Was Beaten To Death By Muslims Right In Front Of My Eyes” – Husband Of Igbo Woman Killed For Blasphemy In Kano Cries Out
- 6 reasons why everyone should live on Lagos Mainland
- Business Booms In Katsina As President Buhari’s Daughter Fatima Weds
- President Buhari’s Daughter Fatima Buhari Weds Former chief executive of federal mortgage bank
- CBN Engaging in Fraudulent Anti-Citizen Policies in Contravention of 2007 Act
- Fuel Price Hike I cannot guarantee monitoring all NNPC stations – Kachikwu
- In Osun NAFDAC seizes fake drugs, shut down ‘pure water’ factory
- Ondo rally: Tinubu, Akande absent as Buhari says Akeredolu’ll win
- Still watch out for Lassa fever
- Kano to inaugurate 100MW power plant
- We are feeling your pains, Buhari tells Nigerians
- PDP and Futility of Compromise- by Femi Fani-Kayode
- Boko Haram Militants dare terrorists to kill Christians
- Nigeria is gradually being Islamised — CAN Secretary, Asake
- Dieties are Messengers from God-Ooni of Ife
- Kano signs $1.8bn light rail contract with Chinese firm
- Insurgents flooding into Kano – Ganduje
- Nigerian Army 37 soldiers sustain injuries in auto crash in Kano
- Kano loses two pilgrims in Saudi Arabia
- 9 Richest Kings In The History Of Nigeria & How They Enjoy Royal Splendor (Pics)
- My life is in danger –Man who named dog after Buhari
- Femi Fani-Kayode Ex minister narrates ordeal in EFCC custody
- Economic crisis: Nigeria will overcome, says Saraki
- Buhari President’s economic recovery efforts deserve understanding of Nigerians – US envoy
- EFCC Recruitment: Important Announcement
- Tinubu Criticizes Buhari’s Economic Policies, Says I Won’t Ignore The Truth
- Lai Mohammed Agriculture is surest way to Nigerian economic prosperity
- Nigeria discourages businesses with threats and risks