Liverpool Market sales dwindle as Nigerian buyers forced to stay away supposedly due to Buhari’s war on corruption –

March 17, 2016



“We go to Switzerland and other countries to buy goods and carry as much money as we need and the UK does not stop us as long as we can prove it is our money,” she said, pointing out that placing a blanket restriction victimises innocent people who earn their money legitimately.  – A Liverpool Market shop owner

A shop manager said business is dwindling in the area due to a significant in the number of Nigerian customers.

London’s world famous Sunday market, better known as Liverpool Street Market, in East London is facing hard times as some of its businesses are folding up while many others are struggling to stay afloat due to the low patronage of Nigerians, a Daily Trust findings have shown.

The 400-year-old market, which sells mainly clothes for women, men and children; designer goods, as well as bric-a-brac and household goods, is patronised mainly by Nigerians and other customers from around the world.
A recent survey by Daily Trust showed that the change of government in Nigeria, coupled with cash and financial policies that placed restrictions on the amount of money one can travel with or withdraw abroad have led to a drastic reduction of Nigerian customers at the market.

In one of the big textile shops in the market, an employee who craved anonymity told Daily Trust that their sales had slumped by more than 40 percent since the inception of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, adding that the few Nigerian customers who come in now buy only a fraction of items they used to buy in the past.

In another top textile shop with a reputation of serving tea to big time customers while they shop, a manager who wouldn’t like his name published said their business has been going through “tough times” in the last few months due to a “significant” drop in the number of Nigerian customers.

“When the going was good, a lot of Nigerian customers bought assorted items in bulk and opted for door- to- door courier or cargo delivery in Nigeria,” but lamented that they hardly have such customers now.
Hajiya Rabi, a store operative, while confirming the decline in sales owing to a drastic drop in the number of Nigerian customers, said the future of businesses, especially textiles shops in the market looked very bleak without robust patronage by Nigerians and other customers.

Speaking in the same vein, a shop owner, Chief (Mrs.) Franca Aina, said sales had “really, really gone down,” and attributed the trend partly to restrictions on credit card spending and the limited amount of cash Nigerians are allowed to carry or withdraw abroad.
Aina, who is Nigerian, said the situation was so bad that some shops and businesses were closing down, stressing that: “I think it’s because of the new government’s war on corruption.”

“In the past, Nigerians used to come here and spend (money) anyhow. But now only a few come and they spend very little. In many shops, 90 percent of sales are by Nigerian customers. So you can see why the businesses are folding up,” she narrated.
The shop owner appealed to the Nigerian government to look into the cash and financial restrictions placed on its citizens travelling abroad, stressing that people should be allowed to carry as much money as they wish as long as they could prove ownership of the money.

“We go to Switzerland and other countries to buy goods and carry as much money as we need and the UK does not stop us as long as we can prove it is our money,” she said, pointing out that placing a blanket restriction victimises innocent people who earn their money legitimately.

Daily Trust reports that in most of the shops visited, operatives were seen idling away as very few customers were in the shops, unlike in the past when such shops were a beehive of activities as the operatives struggled to cope with customers’ demand.
A couple seen seated in one of the shops told Daily Trust that they were from Nigeria and they came to the market to buy some fabrics and other items for personal use and gifts (tsaraba) for family and friends at home.

It is recalled that businesses at the market recorded very poor sales for a few days in January 2012 during the fuel subsidy removal protests in Nigeria when flights into the UK were suspended, and it took weeks before the situation became normal.

Source: [Nigeria}

(Thanks, Sis. for sending this. Tola)



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4 Comments on “Liverpool Market sales dwindle as Nigerian buyers forced to stay away supposedly due to Buhari’s war on corruption –”

  1. folakemiodoaje Says:

    Interesting …there should be a way to verify income sources so everyone is not penalised in this spend-abroad restrictions. And again, we do need to close all the drain in the system – tough job.



    • emotan77 Says:

      Dear Folakemi,

      Yes, indeed,it’s a tough job whichever way we look at it but my belief is that no country (as poor/needy as Nigeria is) can survive the kind of freewheeling foreign exchange in place before Buhari. X travels to, say, Liverpool Market once a month and spends 7 days each of which sees her going to ATMs to withdraw 400 pounds daily.

      While this may seem okay, this had its loopholes that were greatly exploited by bankers, the Liverpudlians (!), et cetera. Of course there are other drain pipes – in fact, too many, apart from the looters at parastatals, government agencies, the military, top politicians, top civil servants & political bigwigs & their cohorts …

      I do not know enough to offer solutions but I believe Buhari’s actions to date, ineffective and “punitive” as they may appear to be, are in the right direction but more is needed.

      Imagine, more than 90% of customers of a whole and huge market were Nigerians!

      As an avid reader of this blog – a very-involved and well-informed professor who is a sort of older sister – who forwarded the post to me titled her reaction to the supposed turn in fortune of Liverpool Market: “VERY VERY VERY GOOD!” The all-caps & exclamation are all hers; I do concur with her.

      Sincere regards,

      Liked by 1 person


      • folakemiodoaje Says:

        I totally agree with this. In fact this is the same thing i was trying to let people close to me understand. It is unfortunate that people who earned their money will suffer too but given the state of Nigeria – they are very few.

        Talking about Liverpool Street market – many shops that cater for Nigerians sell lace and Ankara prints, which are from Dutch factories, perhaps from south east Asia too – ironic as people who can afford to take regular trips all the way from Nigeria for vanity are the same ones the country was trusted with.

        I really hope The president has a team working to restoring the power/infrastructure


      • emotan77 Says:

        Dear Folakemi,

        Our problems are many. and like the Yoruba’s proverbial several trees that have fallen one over the other, they need steady hands like those of Buhari’s present set-up to remove one from on top of each other till the logjam is cleared. Hopefully, we’ll get there.

        Thanks v. much for your usual contributions.

        Liked by 1 person

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