“I only eat” sudden death “”: in Ivory Coast, the price of food is exploding

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Under the Anono covered market in Abidjan, Tania’s plantains are visibly black. The saleswoman uses all the arguments to bait the barge: “You can keep them for several more days, some like them a little softer, it melts in your mouth. ” But nothing helps: in this popular district, customers go their way.

And for good reason, “It’s six bananas at 500 CFA francs [0,76 euro] », says Tania. Almost twice as expensive as the price it offered at the start of the year. Beside him, Rachel, a client, denounces the rise in prices in the markets and the daily headache for families. “Everything increases, she breathes. Oil, bananas, tomatoes, onions… We have to calculate everything, that tires us out. ”

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Official figures confirm this waltz of labels in Côte d’Ivoire, but not in the same proportions. According to data from the National Institute of Statistics, between July 2020 and July 2021, the harmonized index of consumer prices increased by 4.7%. And in detail, certain products such as meat or fish have experienced surges exceeding 10%.

This surge in food prices is described as ” emergency situation “ by the authorities. Alerted by the anger that was roaring in homes, Prime Minister Patrick Achi visited one of Abidjan’s largest markets in July to announce the “Price control” some basic food items, including rice, refined palm oil, flour and beef. A short-term decision, supposed to curb price increases as much as popular discontent, but with mixed results so far. The fault, according to the authorities, to traders who indulge in speculation.

One meal per day

A few days after the Prime Minister’s announcement, a protest movement denouncing the high cost of living tried to rise in the streets of the economic capital. A demonstration immediately stifled by the police, who came in large numbers. And since then, nothing. “The population is afraid to speak out, we need megaphone so that the most precarious can be heard”, protested Salif Sanogo, an inhabitant of Anono member of an informal association that helps the poorest families in the neighborhood.

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“I only eat” sudden death “”: in Ivory Coast, the price of food is exploding

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