Awka - Prices of food items have risen sharply in Awka following the recent flood in the food producing communities of Anambra.
A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) who visited some markets in the state capital on Tuesday reports that prices of staple foods such as beans and garri had increased by more than 77 per cent.
The survey showed that a measure of beans which sold for N900 before the flood had risen to N1600 while the same quantity of garri now sells for N500 instead of between N250 and N280.
According to Mr Charlse Odum, who sells food stuffs at the Eke-Awka Market, the negative consequence of the flood in the state had started manifesting in the hike in prices of food items.
"The prices of food stuffs have gone up generally, beans and garri are the most affected. Before now, we sold a cup of beans for between N40 and N45 depending on the type but now the cheapest you can get a cup is N80 for the white variety.
"I can't explain it but the major problem is that we don’t have new beans in the market and the old ones, according to suppliers, are not much in stock," he said.
Another trader in the same market, Mrs Juliana Nzekwe, who deals mainly on garri, said the increase was because people could no longer go to their farms due to the flood.
She said the production of the commodity was now very low, adding that this had hampered production.
"People are no longer willing to buy as much as they used to. What is available now is white garri because it is a bit cheaper than the yellow type.
"Our people cannot go to their farms because they have been taken over by flood. A measure of garri now sells for N500, but we were selling it for between N250 and N280 before," she said.
Nzekwe added that the prices of palm oil, onions and other food items had gone up and called on the government to take steps to prevent food crisis in the country.
NAN, however, reports that the prices of some food stuffs like rice and tinned tomatoes were stable.