COVID-19: Price gouging soars amidst rising cases in Ghana

by Business Zone

As the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) menace shows no sign of declining with the number of confirm cases on the rise each day, traders in consumables such as face masks, hand sanitisers, liquid soaps and even tissues, have consistently been gouging prices of such goods on the market.

This phenomenon has been posing great challenges and worries to the consuming public in regard to how much they have to pay for such essentials.

Checks revealed that a 60 milliliters (60ml) bottle of sanitizer which about three weeks ago, was selling for GHc4, is now being sold between GHc12-15 while a box of same which was sold for GHc65 is now being sold for GHc320.

A 200ml which was sold for GHc7.00 is now being sold for GHc60 with its carton which was hitherto GHc150, now selling for GHc570.

A box of face nose mask which was being sold for GHc15 now sells for GHc150 whiles a carton of same, which was sold between GHc400-GHc500 based of quality, now sells for GHc5, 500.

Conversely, the trend has also affected the price of food on the Ghanaian market as sellers have suddenly and astronomically increased the price of foodstuff.

A container of gari (olonka) which at the beginning of the month of March was being sold at GHc8.00, has suddenly doubled to GHc17.00.

The trend, has left many stakeholders and policy analysts, asking legitimate questions in regard to the exploitation and if indeed the average Ghanaian can afford such essentials in this dire moments.

Meanwhile, it remains unclear whether the 100,000 medical masks and the 1000 protective suits and face shields offered to the country by billionaire Jack Ma, will be distributed to a portion of the Ghanaian population or would only be made available to the country’s health workers.

On March 12, 2020, Ghana recorded its first COVID-19 cases, where two people who returned to the country from Europe, according to government has contracted the disease.

Since then, recorded cases has been on the rise, totaling 152 cases as of midday, Tuesday, March 31, 2020.

Source: BusinessZone Online

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