Households cost of living crisis intensifies as inflation hits 17yr high – Businessday

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Businessday Ng –
Africa’s biggest economy is facing the highest rates of inflation since October 2005, with households suffering the biggest hit to their income.
Food inflation is at a 14-month high, hitting 22.02 percent in July, while headline inflation accelerated to 19.64 – a 17-year high.
Nigeria’s cost of living crisis is showing no sign of abating and the government is yet to provide any emergency financial support for low income earners.
BusinessDay in its usual manner interviewed some Nigerians to share their experiences as their cost of living crisis intensifies. Here are their responses:
Israel Odubola
Odubola is a research consultant.
How are you coping with the rise in food prices and what are you buying less of?
On the contrary, I am not buying less of any basic items required for healthy living even though cost has increased remarkably.. With the current situation, I am now rational in managing my finances.
What do you have to forgo in terms of housing, healthcare and education?
Housing, Healthcare and Education are essentials of human living. You would not say because rent has increased, you won’t live in an apartment. You wouldn’t say because the cost of accessing healthcare services has risen, you won’t visit the hospital or clinic whenever you are will. Well, I believe these three items are priority to human living. We can’t just do without them even though they are expensive
How easy has it been for you to move around?
It hasn’t been easy moving around recently in terms of commuting to my office. I spent nothing less than N7, 500 in filling my vehicle week. The situation is more or less same for commuters who use commercial vehicles.
Has your income increased in the last year?
In terms of income, while the nominal increase in my income flows might have wiped off by spiraling inflation, I have private engagements that bring income flows periodically. Given the economic situation of ours, having multiple streams of income is vital.
Read also: How Jobberman is proffering solutions to Nigeria’s unemployment rate
What are your fears if the economy continues like this?
If you look at key macroeconomic indicators from foreign exchange rate, inflation to debt, Nigerian situation has worsened considerably from an economic standpoint. If the inflationary trend persists, we might likely see an uptrend in social vices and criminal activities.
Goziem Nwogu
Nwogu is a graduate of University of Nigeria Nsukka
How are you coping with the rise in food prices and what are you buying less of?
Basically, we all know that agriculture in Nigeria is on the downturn part and it has not really been easy on both farmers due to the header farmer clashes in most of the agricultural environment. So food prices are on the rise and it has not been easy for me. Basically everything on the high side above what my expenditure should be is what I’m buying less of. I used to stock my house with food stuff that would last two months before but that has to change. I now pick up what I need from the market as the need arises.
What do you have to forgo in terms of housing, healthcare and education?
Talking about housing, it should be a paramount need and I consider everything needed under the roof as important too. Healthcare is also what I don’t joke with because health they said is wealth. But I can start giving you answers from education. I can forgo that among the three to continue when I think I am financially stable. At this point in time, I believe artisanship is even more paying off than having a degree in this country. I planned to enroll in my master’s degree program but I have to forfeit that till when things stabilize.
How easy has it been for you to move around?
Transportation as well is on the hiked fuel to prices of fuel and others. So it has not really been easy and income has not increased. So I now have a limit to places I visit. Anything taking me outside the state or country must be official.
Has your income increased in the last year?
My income didn’t increase and I’m not surprised because if the economy is good, that’s when we talk of income increasing. There is no way my income will increase when my source of income is affected. Prices of goods and services went high to the extent that you can’t budget what you want to purchase from home which is unlike before. So expenses are much and till the economy bounces back, I will not say that my income increased.
What are your fears if the economy continues like this?
There is a breaking point to the humanity session. If the economy continues like this, people will start going bankrupt not just financially but both mentally, emotionally and otherwise. It will get everybody and there are chances that corruption and robbery will increase. It will be accompanied with a lot of immoral because people will now think outside the box to survive and some may find the negative way. There is a need to act fast to ensure economic stability or many will go astray.
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Business Day, established in 2001, is a daily business newspaper based in Lagos. It is the only Nigerian newspaper with a bureau in Accra, Ghana. It has both daily and Sunday titles. It circulates in Nigeria and Ghana
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