Many long been facing rough ride with inflation 

The continuous increases in prices at the pump, in the food stores and throughout the economy has been difficult for Chequan Saunders, 22, the father of a three-year-old boy.

And the prediction that things will only worsen over the next few months does not make things any easier.

“I feel it,” said Saunders, who is unemployed.

“I have to manage my money more and it’s hard.”

Saunders said inflation is burdensome.

“Everything is expensive and you can’t really find work,” he said.

“A lot of expenses come with a son. The prices keep rising for different things. It’s really hard.”

When asked if he will be able to make it while not working, Saunders replied, “To be real, no. I can’t really hold on.”

Things are also rough for Fred Smith, 60, who is unemployed.

He said he is trying to “weather the storm”.

“I’m at the retirement age,” Smith said.

“I’ve applied to NIB now for seven months and I haven’t received anything. You know, I’m feeling it because I have mortgages to pay and living amenities to take care of and there’s nothing coming in.”

Smith said he used to be able to go to the food store with $100 and get “a whole trolley”.

“Now, it’s just giving you a bag,” he said.

Since the start of the year, The Bahamas, like many other countries, has been battling historically high inflation caused by supply chain disruptions stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, which was exasperated by the war in Ukraine.

During the 12 months to April, average consumer price inflation accelerated to 3.8 percent from 0.4 percent in the corresponding period of 2021, according to the Central Bank of The Bahamas.

The International Monetary Fund said it expects inflation to remain “stubbornly high” and predicted a return to normal pricing levels by 2024.

While Jeffrey McKinney, 58, a resident of Masons Addition, is also feeling the pinch, he told The Nassau Guardian that he is just “going with the flow” until things return to normal.

“It doesn’t matter,” he said.

“I just want to eat. I just want to live. It may harm other persons, but I go with the flow. I’m making the best of the situation. I can’t row the person that’s selling the things.”

McKinney said things were worse for him at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Things were a little slow for me,” he said. “Over a period of time, things picked up and we got back to basics. When we go to the food store, prices [are] high sometimes but that’s just the food store. Prices will be high.”

Prime Minister Philip Davis said on Sunday the high level of inflation is expected to continue for the next few months.

He advised Bahamians to be frugal.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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