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Eid El Adha: ‘More than enough sheep in Sudan, but unaffordable’

September 11 - 2016 RADIO DABANGA
Sheep for sale in the outskirts of Omdurman (
Sheep for sale in the outskirts of Omdurman (

Sudanese all over the country complain about the recent price hikes, and the sky-rocketing prices of sheep at the eve of the Eid El Adha, the Islamic Feast of the Sacrifice that will commence on Monday.

The outcome of a short poll conducted by Radio Dabanga reveals that sheep are not affordable to the “common man” in Sudan. Most of the people interview hold the government and traders responsible for the “crazy rise of consumer goods prices”.

In Khartoum, the costs of purchasing a sheep range between SDG1,500 and SDG3,000 ($490), journalist Amna Suleiman said. “Large numbers of sheep are offered at the markets, but they are unaffordable for the average family whose monthly income vary between SDG300 and SDG3,000.

She added that not only the tradition of slaughtering a sheep “seems to be disappearing”, but that many children will not be wearing new garments this year as well, as the prices of especially children’s clothes have become “incredibly expensive”.

In the South Darfur capital of Nyala, the price of a sheep ranges from SDG900 to SDG2,500 ($410), a housewife said. She added that a kilo of sugar now costs SDG14 ($2.30) and a kilo of onions SDG25 ($5).

In eastern Sudan, the situation is not different. Sources reported from Port Sudan and El Gedaref that the minimum price of a sheep lies around SDG2,000.

The people in the capital of North Kordofan, pay between SDG1,000 ($163) and SDG2,500 for a sheep. Residents of El Obeid attributed the “exorbitant prices of sheep” to the fees and levies imposed by the government on livestock traders. They also pointed to a significant rise in the prices of flour, bread, and sugar, and clothes.

Though Abu Jubeiha locality in South Kordofan is a livestock producing area, the minimum price of a sheep at the markets amounts to SDG800 ($130). A listener reported from Abu Jubeiha town that many people also suffer from soaring consumer goods prices.

Family visits

The Eid El Adha is preferably spent with relatives. Many Sudanese usually travel to their home towns to celebrate the feast together.

This year, however, many people living in Khartoum who want to visit their relatives in the country are complaining about a “significant rise of ticket prices”, and a shortage of buses.

“The price of a ticket to Delling [in South Kordofan] costs SDG240 ($40), to El Obeid SDG200. They ask SDG100 ($16.30) for a ticket to Kosti, 320 kilometres south of Khartoum. A ticket to Wad Madani now costs SDG68 ($11),” a passenger told Radio Dabanga on Friday.

He said that the regional bus station in South Khartoum is overcrowded. “Though the ticket prices are soaring, thousands of travellers are waiting for a seat. There are not enough buses anymore. The authorities have seized many number plates from buses, and suspended the drivers’ licenses, as they were taking extra passengers after they had left the severely controlled bus station.”

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