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Recession: Lagosians turn to secondhand clothes for Christmas

Secondhand clothes

Barely four days to Christmas, many Lagosians have found solace in buying imported used clothes, shoes and bags and other fashion accessories, popularly called ‘ Secondhand, Tokunbo, Akube, or First-grade”.

It was gathered that major markets in State have been flooded with such fairly used accessories, a development which has seen many residents purchasing in large quantity, a move which is not unconnected to the current economic recession in the country, NAN reports.

A visit to markets Ikeja, Yaba, Ikorodu, Aswani, Lagos Island and Oshodi, reveals that sellers of these fairly used goods have making quite good sales.

At most of the markets and public places visited, large numbers of people were seen flocking around traders, haggling for better prices on the displayed goods.

The traders attributed the high demands for imported used clothes and shoes to paucity of funds and the harsh economic climate that compelled people to resort to affordable alternatives.

Mr John Okoro, a trader at the Oshodi Market, said he had been experiencing a sales boom since the end of November.

“Before, I could spend a month selling a bale of clothes but now, I sell two bales within a week,” he said.

Miss Angela Njoku, a seller of shoes and bags at Ikorodu, said that her sales had improved, to the level that her customers now pre-order, to buy goods.

Mrs Stella Ayeniko, a customer, attributes her preference for imported used clothes to their quality, durability and unique designs.

“I cannot afford the prices for the kind of clothes and shoes that I want for my children in their new state.

“I resorted to second hand clothes because I can get good first-grade gowns for my girl at about N3000, compared to N10, 000 for a new one,” she said.

However, Mrs Monsurat Batola, Iyaloja of Yaba Market, complained that the hike in foreign exchange rate had affected the prices of bales of various grades of used clothes and shoes.

A bale is a package of goods in a clothe cover.

“A bale of first-grade imported used clothes for children that previously costs about N120, 000 now goes for N250, 000 depending on its country of origin.

“We are appealing to the government to sort the issue of the foreign exchange because it is affecting our profit margin,’’ Batola added.