Some animal dealers in Osun State, who had stocked goats, rams and cows for sale ahead of the Sallah festival, are complaining of low patronage.

They are lamenting that their hopes for brisk business during the festive period has been dashed as a result of the poor state of the nation’s economy.

Bounce News investigation, however revealed that the high cost of the animals was responsible for the low sales.

Our correspondent’s visit to Sabo market in Ile-ife, revealed a significant rise in the prices of various sizes of the rams compared to last year.

Small, average and big rams this year are selling for N55,000, N75,000 and N150,000 as against N30,000, N40,000 and N80,000 respectively in 2017.

A ram seller in the market, Usman  Salihu, attributed the high prices this year to the economic downturn and insecurity in some parts of northern Nigeria where these animals are reared and transported to other parts of the country for sale.

He added that some of the sellers go as far as Niger Republic to buy them and pay heavily to transport them to the South-West.

Muhammad Adamu, another dealer who brought rams from Zamfara, said some of the customers were only coming to bargain without buying.

“We pray to make some sales before Sallah because returning the rams to Zamfara will be a loss to me, considering the expenses.

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“Things are very hard nowadays, we appeal to the Federal Government do something urgently to address the suffering of the masses,’’ he said.

A buyer at the market, Razaq Sheu said he was at the market for the second day but could not afford the price.

“I was here on Saturday but I cannot buy because the same size I bought last year at N30,000 is being sold for N55,000.

“I am here today very prepared to see that I get one,” he said.

Bounce News investigation also revealed that the prices of chicken, beans, fruits, beverages, cooking oil remained high.

It was learnt that sellers of chicken were, however, making brisk business at various markets in the town.

A seller, Rebecca Ogunbiyi, said he had sold all the birds he brought and had to restock.

He said that prices of chickens hovered between N2,500, N3,900, N4,000 and N5,000, depending on the size.

According to him, the prices are a bit higher when compared with 2017, due to the high cost of animal care and chicken feed.

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