Ahead of the 2018 Eid-el-Kabir celebration, ram dealers at New Artisan Market, Enugu, have decried low patronage by buyers.
Musa Yero, the Acting Chairman, Ram Dealers’ Association, Enugu chapter, attributed the situation to the high cost of the animals.
Mr Yero told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the price increase was beyond dealers’ expectations.
“The ram prices increased beyond our expectations; the prices are about 44 per cent higher when compared to last Eid-el-Kabir prices.”
He attributed the increase to the cost of transportation from the northern part of the country.
He said that a medium-size ram was selling at N55,000 as against its previous price of N35,000, while a bigger ram also goes for between N75,000 and N95, 00 as against N68,000 and N73,000 previously.
According to him, the least price of a ram currently is N24,500.
Another ram dealer, Isa Abdullahi, noted that the price hike had affected sales, stressing that customers were not coming to buy as they should.
Mr Abdullahi said dealers in the northern part of the country were still afraid to go about their ram business due to the security situation around them, which, he noted, had impacted on the prices.
“The security situation along the routes where these rams are being moved down from and some main ram markets had been attacked by insurgents, thereby causing the ram prices to rise,” he said.
Shehu Umar, another dealer, however, said he was hopeful that patronage would improve by Saturday, three days to the celebration.