Frozen fish and chicken retailers in Warri, Delta State, on Thursday, staged a peaceful protest against the rising cost of the products in the metropolis.
The aggrieved traders, mostly women, armed with fresh green leaves, sang anti government songs as they took their protest to some of the leading wholesalers of frozen foods in Warri South and Uvwie Local Government Areas.
The protesters complained bitterly that the daily rises in prices of frozen foods were becoming unbearable, as it was having adverse effect on their business.
One of the leaders of the aggrieved protesters, Mrs Onoriode Onokpite, while speaking with journalists, lamented that they now recorded low patronage on daily basis.
She said, “Customers no longer patronise us as they used to. It is suffocating us. Most of us are bread winners of our families.
“We decided to take our protest to the wholesalers of frozen foods so that they can reduce prices of frozen foods for us. Government should wade into the matter. We are dying”.
A spokesperson of Ocean Lord Frozen Foods Company, Solomon Ogheneovo, while reacting to the protest, attributed the cause of the increase in the frozen foods prices to the unprecedented increase in exchange of the naira to dollar.
While acknowledging the right of the aggrieved retailers of frozen foods to protest, he however noted that they were misdirecting their grievances.
According to him, the wholesalers bought products in foreign exchange of currency.
He was of the opinion that the protesters should rather direct their protest to government and not the wholesalers of frozen foods.
“If the exchange rate of the naira to dollar is low, the retail price of frozen foods will equally be low”, he said.