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General News of Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Source: Cameroon Tribune

Books Swelling Supplies, Climbing Price

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Exercise books prices have continued to rise sharply after the reading of the 2012 General Certificate Examination (GCE) results last August 2, signalling future high prices in September and early October when schools will effectively kick-off.

As teachers officially resumed yesterday, August 27, 2012, most parents have shifted focus to books and other writing materials. Many have taken the advantage to secure books for their children now and avoid unusual price hikes often at the start of every school year. Although book (text, exercise books) prices soared at the beginning of August, Peace Sonfack - a parent, says it has continued to rise and will do so even more by September 9 when schools officially resume in the country. "Prices witness a little more addition in bookshops," she noted.

A 20-leave exercise book is sold at 100F along the street, 40 leaves at 200F, and 60 leaves at 300F. On the heels of schools' reopening, as it is now, attention towards learning materials has attracted rising prices. Each of the books has now witnessed 25F to 50F increase for those sold in shops and 50F to 100F addition for all types sold in bookshops. French exercise book (hard cover) of 400 pages now costs 2,000F, unlike in July when it sold 1,500F. Like other parents, she prefers buying from roadside or street vendors to bookshops.

Trade Ministry has passed a ban against text book sale in open places like markets, streets, as well as academic institutions. The decision taken early last week restricts their sale to bookshops. Used text books and new ones are still being sold in unlawful places along the streets, markets and in schools, especially private academic institutions.

A parent in New Bell finds no reason not to buy from vendors who now move from door to door, or choose to buy from a bookshop (perhaps, far away and at a higher cost) when there are cheap and desired qualities being sold at street corners nearby.

Most female pupil/students go for books with music icons and actresses on the front cover, while male prefer those with football icons and actors.

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