Koriteh 'Wanterr' kicks-off
Friday, October 05, 2007
Barely 21 days into the holy month of Ramadan, thousands Muslims have started flocking the market in the wake of Koriteh 'Wanterr' (fall in the prices of goods).
Annually, hundred of thousands of Gambians use this moment for a shopping spree in preparation of the Muslim feast (Eid-l-Fitr), which is observed at the end of Ramadan, after a month of prayers, repentance, forgiveness and compassion.
It is a tradition that markets are flooded with numerous vendors, who move about in the market to satisfy the tastes of anxious customers, with a view to make ends meet. Some sell household items, consumer goods, while others trade in agricultural produce.
Our reporter who visited Serrekunda Market, one of the most busiest markets in the country, discovered that even the streets of the markets were occupied by vendors, thus increasing competition, which forces prices to fall at the advantage of consumers. Customers had to struggle through narrow passages in the market to get the taste of their goods.
According to Seedy Faal, a retailer at Serrekunda, the Wanterr has started a few days ago. He observed that customers have been gradually turning up for shopping.
Modou Talla, a textile dealer, expressed concerns about the fix price of some goods, particularly basic commodities, despite the appreciation of the Dalasi against major hard currencies.
Mr Talla told the Daily Observer that the competition in the market is at its peak, noting that sales are based on luck. "Sometimes, you sell more but sometimes you get satisfactory sales. That is the nature of business," he said.
Ahmed Abdullah Hydara, who trades in body outfits, uses a bell, accompanied by 'Wanteer, Wanteer' (the market slogan) to attract the attention of customers. He described this technique as a way of calling on customers at a far distance.
Hydara noted that as a businessman, one needs to be creative and jovial, especially at this time of Ramadan, when the feast is just less than two weeks.
Aja Ndey Secka, who sells shoes, advised people to thank God and pray for forgiveness, regardless of their deeds. Mrs Secka described Ramadan as a blessed month, saying that even the traders reap its accompanying benefits.
Other vendors, who spoke to the Daily Observer, included Tacko Jawo, a food vendor, Neneh Cham, Ma-Bintou Camara and Fatouding Marong, all of whom are vegetable vendors.
Author: by Musa Ndow