'Price hikes spoil Eid El Fitr for many Sudanese'
People all over Sudan are complaining about the prices of clothes, especially children's clothes, with the advent of Eid El Fitr that concludes the fasting month of Ramadan.
Listeners told Radio Dabanga that the month of Ramadan and the fees for the new school year that will start after the Eid Al Fitr have consumed all their savings.
People in Sudan used to buy sweets, presents, and new clothes, for their children at the end of the fasting month. “It has become a tradition to complain about price hikes the days before the Eid,” a father of five told Radio Dabanga from the Sudanese capital. “Yet, this time it seems I can barely afford to buy sweets.”
He said that the price of children's clothes at the markets of Khartoum range between SDG 100 ($15) and 400. “They ask SDG 130 for a T-shirt skirt for girls between three and five years old, and SDG 150 for a trouser for a boy of the same age.”
As the majority of the Sudanese are working in the informal sector, they do not have a fixed income. As for employees and workers, the monthly salary of for instance a beginning basic school teacher is about SDG 700 ($105), that of a school director lies around SDG 3,000 ($450).
Darfur, South Kordofan
In North Darfur, the prices of clothes for young children lie between SDG 150 and SDG 500. “For children aged ten years and older, you pay between SDG 300 and SDG 700,” an angry housewife reported from the capital of El Fasher.
Hussein Abusharati, head of the Darfur Displaced and Refugees Association, said that this Eid will be the worst feast they have experienced in the camps in terms of living and material conditions.
“Apart from sky-rocketing prices, heavy rains caused many shelters to collapse, especially in Kalma camp,” he said. “All these circumstances have deprived us of shopping at the markets and bestowing joy on our children and families.”
In South Kordofan as well, people complained about an unprecedented increase in the prices of Eid supplies and clothing.
“The price hikes spoil Eid El Fitr for many Sudanese,” a listener reported from Delling. “A malwa [3.145 kg] of dates or other sweets costs SDG 80 to SDG 100.”
People in Kassala pay about SDG 1,000 to dress a child in new clothes, Ibrahim El Nur told Radio Dabanga. He said that the state employees have not received the Eid allowance “which exacerbated their situation”.
In El Gedaref, traders are complaining about a stagnation in the sales. “The people are reluctant to buy Eid commodities,” trader Osama El Sayed told this station. He sells women garments for SDG 250 and trousers for boys for SDG 150.
In El Damazin, capital of Blue Nile state, people pay between SDG 250 and SDG 500 for children's clothes. “Many poor families can not afford to buy children’s clothes, or even dates and sweets,” a trader said.
He attributed the price hikes to the tax increase imposed by the government.
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