21 Aug 2019

 

Rising Food Prices Heap Pain On Households In Yei

Local consumers in Yei River County are complaining over the rising prices of food and non-food commodities ahead of the festive season.

By Daniel Friday Martin

YEI, 13 December 2018 [Gurtong]-
Susan Tabu a consumer who visited Yei central market to buy food items told Gurtong that she was surprised to see that a bucket of maize grains that used to cost 450 SSP last week has risen to 550 SSP this week.

“I am really worried that prices have gone so early this time around. I came here to buy some flour but I discovered that I have under budgeted. A bucket of maize grains is now 550 beyond my buying price last weekend. And also a bar of soap that has dropped to 50 SSP in the past few weeks is now selling at 80 to 100 SSP in other places” she noted.

Grace Melinga another buyer said “I think this is due to the nearing festive season that is why prices of items are really running high on daily basis. I came to Dar-el- Salam market to buy some vegetables and grains. A small mug of beans is 150 SSP up from the usual 100 SSP in the past. One small bundle of Amarantus or locally known as Dodo that used to sell at 10 SSP is now 20 SSP. I am worried for other people like me who cannot afford to buy a kilogram of meat” she added.

Both Susan and Grace are calling on the local government to regulate the market prices so as to protect consumer’s rights in the town.

A seller who identified himself only as Mohamed told Gurtong that, they increased their selling prices due to the dollar hike and heavy taxes by the government at the border and multiple check points across the country.

“We don’t have problems with the consumers and we equally feel their financial challenges. The issue is the dollar, once it goes up we also increase our selling prices. Secondly there are a lot of taxes levied on the traders by each government authority along the major roads entering into the country.

Mohamed is calling on the government to reduce taxes on essential commodities such as sugar, salt, fuel so that suppliers or traders can reduce the costs imposed on the consumers.

South Sudan is one of the countries around the world that operates under a free market economy.  Analysts say weak institutions, policies and absence of peace and stability will continue to affect the country’s economy if no positive measures are taken to address the situation.
 

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