By Nana Musa
Many business owners in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), have decried low patronage and high cost of purchasing products.
The business owners spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent on Friday in Abuja.
Mr Aliyu Isa, a meat seller at the Wuse market described the low patronage as worrisome.
“I have been coming here to sell cow meat on a daily basis, but the turn up has not been encouraging so I decided to stay at home for some days.
“In spite that the holidays are over, business has not been very good, things are yet to pick up,” he said.
Malam Bello Bello, a vegetable seller, said the low patronage was witnessed even during the Easter holidays which ordinarily should attract high patronage.
“Vegetables are not goods you can keep for long and they are supposed to be consumed fresh.
“Some customers still complain of lack of cash and high charges in accessing cash from Point of Sale (PoS) operators, making it difficult for them to patronise me,” Bello said.
A customer, Mrs Elizabeth Smith, said that she was at the market on Tuesday to do some shopping but was not able to shop due to poor network on her bank app.
Smith said besides poor e-transaction, high PoS charges was responsible for low patronage from customers.
“I could not buy anything in the market because the PoS charges were too high for me,” she said.
She urged the Federal Government to look into the excesses of the PoS operators and call them to order.
Another customer, Angela Agbo reiterated the need for relevant authorities to check the activities of PoS operators and also make cash readily available to Nigerians.
“I know that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has given directive to PoS operators to return to their normal charges.
“However, some of them still take advantage of the cash limitations,” she said.
Agbo also lamented the high cost of food items which were responsible for consumers’ inability to purchase the products.
“When we had cash issues, most goods went high, especially when you want to make a transfer to a vendor, we expected that things should go back to normal after the pronouncement by the CBN.
“For example, meat sellers increased their price from N2,000 to N3,000 per kilogramme with the excuse of lack of cash,” she said.
A PoS operator in the market, who pleaded anonymity, said the high cost was as a result of their inability to access cash from the banks.
“I believe that if the CBN can provide enough money for PoS operators, everything will be fine again,” the operator said. (NAN)