Junaid Jibril Maiva, Maiduguri
Barely ten days to Eid-el-Kabir Sallah celebration when Muslim faithful are expected to slaughter rams as part of the celebration rituals, ram dealers in Borno state are lamenting low patronage, Neptune Prime has found.our reporter went round cattle markets in Maiduguri to assess the situation.
Some Ram dealers in the popular cattle market (Kasuwan Shanu)complained of low patronage of the livestock this year, attributing it to economic hardships and salary delay.
While other dealers complained about the scarcity of the livestock in the market due to Boko Haram crisis.
Baba Garbati, a Ram dealer was with the opinion that inaccessible roads to some major towns and villages as a result of Boko Haram crisis is the reason that Rams were so scarce and explained that the low patronage will be over when Government pays workers salaries.
A dealer who preferred anonymity said that sales were different last year.
“Last year this time, I sold at least twenty rams in a day, but I can’t even sell five today because of the economic situation.”
Another civil servant says many Muslim faithful will not be able to afford rams this year if Government didn’t pay salary.
At Bulunkutu Ram Market, it was observed that there is a significant difference in business compared to other markets. The price of ram still remains the same as last year and the patronage is convincing according to some customers interviewed.
“The Price of This ram is not different with the one I bought last year in this market, I bought it thirty thousand Naira and same I bought another one of similar size and weight,” said Hajiya Kaltume Zannah.
According to a dealer in the market, “most of them bring in the Rams from neighboring towns and villages in large quantity, they just need small profit and sell to sub dealers.”
“We cannot afford to sell at exorbitant prices because we sell to people who resell, that is why we have decided to retain our old prices, and you see how people are rushing to buy Rams,” a dealer who spoke in Shuwa language through an interpreter explained.
Our Correspondent similarly observed that the usual hawkers of Rams in major streets in Maiduguri have reduced tremendously.