Ash Wednesday: Meat sellers groan as fish business boom in Enugu

Maureen Ojinaka

Enugu –   As Christians observe Ash Wednesday, fish sellers make brisk business in Enugu, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

Meat sellers are groaning over low patronage because those observing lent are abstaining from beef.

Some meat sellers told NAN that the patronage in meat business was low due to Ash

Mr Ede Onyema, Vice-Chairman of Meat Sellers’ Association, Artisan Market, Enugu, said that meat patronage this Valentine was low.

Onyema said that Enugu residents who are mostly Christians and dominated by Catholics and Anglicans church members, are passionate about Ash Wednesday.

“Majority of the Enugu residents are Catholics who are passionate about Ash Wednesday. We cannot sell as usual but in small quantity,” Onyema said.

Onyema said that the association slaughters 10 cows daily, but due to the Ash Wednesday, only eight cows were killed.

He added that the meat sellers made brisk businesses in past Valentine Days, stressing that their hope of making huge sells in 2018 Valentine had been dashed because it coincided with the Ash Wednesday.

Another meat seller at Akwata Market, Mr Festus Ilodibe, said he bought small quantity because few cows were slaughtered.

At Mayor Market, Mr Okwuchukwu Eze, expressed sadness on the coincidence of Valentine Day and Ash Wednesday.

Eze said that Valentine Day used to be a day that people patronise meat sellers a lot.

“For me, today is just like a Sunday when business is dull, as you can see most of the meat sellers are not having much on their table and customers are not coming as they should.

“The Valentine Day is a day that we meat sellers make much money but this year, it coincided with Ash Wednesday, so our business today is totally not moving,” Eze said.

Some fish sellers told NAN that business was really booming from the eve of the Ash Wednesday.

A fish pond owner, Mrs Adaugo Akuoma, said she made huge sells from the eve of Ash Wednesday, adding that the prices did not change.

According to her, the prices of the fish, dried or fresh depend on their sizes.

She said that a kilo cost N1,000 while the largest size of catfish cost between N3,000 and N5,000.

Mr Uju Onyekachi, an ice fish seller at Ogbete Main Market, confirm the boom in fish retail outlets, saying she was going for her second carton of ice fish.

Onyekachi said that a carton of fish cost between N15, 000 and N17, 000, and one ice fish depending on the size could be sold for N300 and N600.

“We are always prepared for this day because it must surely come for us to make good sales and be happy at the end of the day,” she said. (NAN)

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