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Delta, federal lawmaker task traders on prices of essential commodities

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Worried about the daily increase in the prices of foodstuffs and COVID-19 protective kits in the markets across Delta, the state government has ordered traders to reduce the cost of their goods or face sanction.

The Commissioner for Trade and Investment, Chika Ossai, who spoke in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Chuks Eboagwu, stated that that the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration would not tolerate the unwholesome practice.

His words: “Globally the prices of food stuffs and protective kits have been reduced drastically, since the outbreak of Coronavirus. So one wonders why in Nigeria, prices of same products and farm produce are going higher just for no visible reason.

“Traders are, therefore, advised not to add to the suffering of the masses through the incessant increase in the prices of foodstuffs in the local market, as the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa-led committee is working round the clock to control and combat this deadly disease that is ravaging the world.”

He commended Deltans for obeying the stay-at-home order, urging them to shun panic buying.

“If the prices of foodstuffs are not controlled by leaders of various markets, government will have no other option than to set up a task force on regulation of prices of foodstuffs.

“We, therefore, warn market women, dealers of foodstuffs and producers of all kinds of COVID-19 protective kits to have a rethink and guard against price hike at this time of the pandemic where all hands are supposed to be on desk to stay safe and overcome the deadly virus ravaging the world,” Ossai added.

In the same vein, the member representing Oredo Federal Constituency of Edo State in the House of Representatives, Omoregie Ogbeide-Ihama, has also canvassed the reduction in prices of essential commodities.

In a statement in Abuja, he regretted that a section of Nigerian traders were making brisk business out of the unfortunate COVID-19 scenario.He, however, cautioned the citizenry again self-medication.

He said: “I plead with our traders and sellers to have the fear of God in their hearts and compassion towards their brothers and sisters this period by resisting the temptation to hoard and over-price essentials goods.

“ I have been shocked to see the astronomical rise in the cost of items like facemasks, hand gloves, and hand sanitisers. No ‘artificial-profit’ that costs lives is worth it.”


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