Al Jazeera features a report on Zimbabwe about the “Zimdollar” and how ever since shops were allowed to accept foreign currency, nobody is willing to receive the local currency. However, because they’re accepting foreign currency, at least the shops that were empty a few months ago are now busy again. Then the reporter, Haru Mutasa suddenly looks grim. “It’s not all good news though” she says. Even though people are shopping again, you now have to pay $10 for a kilo of meat, $6 for a crate of eggs and as much as $1 for a loaf of bread! In other words people are paying two to three times more what would be paid in the US.
Eeeeh? Suddenly I feel very stupid paying a good $6-7 dollars/kilo for meat at Koala, about $5 for a crate of eggs and $2 for a loaf of bread! Is it time we also start making noise about the cost of food in supermarkets in Ghana? I can’t help but wonder if we in Ghana are complacently accepting the prices imposed on us by the supermarkets, as they’re not far off the “result of the economical crisis” in Zimbabwe.
Or is this simply (more likely) just another example of people in the West not realising how expensive life in Africa can be (I purposely say “can be” as I’d probably get the eggs cheaper at Agbobloshie market, but the report featured a supermarket, not a market so I feel the comparison is just)? After all, many ex-pats, friends and family do come to Ghana with the notion that £10 will last ten times longer than in England. They soon get a shocking reality check when their tenner just about covers their entrance fee at Rhapsody’s or buys the basic goods at Shoprite! Either way I feel like letting Haru Mutasa come to Ghana and see for herself, so that she’ll understand if her report doesn’t get such a sensational reaction in Africa as it does elsewhere.