The first three quarters of the year are already gone, and the cost of food has still not gone down. The cost of a bag of rice and other basic commodities is still skyrocketing, and the population is feeling the pinch.
In the beginning of the year, the government made a point of reducing the taxes levied on those commodities with a view to reducing the cost for the benefit of the consumers. However, up until now, we have not realized any substantial reduction in the prices of these food items. Could it be that the government miscalculated when they introduced these measures?
Many still blame the business community for not reducing their prices despite the almost zero tax on these items, particularly rice which is the staple food in the country. Many Gambians cannot afford to buy a bag of rice as frequently as they need to because they simply cannot.
The Gambia is a poor country and the people are generally poor due to the low wages in the country. Thus, if the cost of food is high, it will be difficult for the ordinary Gambian to buy it and then the other basic commodities.
It is high time Government through the Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the Ministry of Trade and Industry came together to devise a mechanism to reduce the cost of food for the citizens.