By Francisca Oluyole, Nigerian News Agency (NAN)
The growing wave of insecurity, especially armed robberies, kidnappings and banditry, has affected the attitude of Nigerians to life as everyone struggles to survive the crimes that are gradually becoming part of daily life. .
The kidnapping for ransom seems to be more frightening as most Nigerians now live in fear of falling victim to the criminal elements.
True to type, Nigerians are inventing different ways of surviving the challenges and vagaries of this new life with women, traditionally known to be the main patrons of gold jewelry, changing their attitude towards the adornment of beauty. .
Because it attracts kidnappers like honey attracts bees, some women stopped wearing expensive gold jewelry, while some quickly sold theirs to ward off the temptation to wear it or even be identified as owning it. .
Magdalene Okon, an official, said wearing gold was not as fashionable as it once was, adding that high cost of gold over the years had prompted people to invest in land in the past. place of gold jewelry that could be stolen in the blink of an eye. with one eye.
“I like to wear gold jewelry sets that include a necklace, earrings and bracelets. But I stopped this because of the insecurity in the country.
“Recently my uncle’s grandchildren were kidnapped because their mother is known to have massive gold jewelry that attracted the kidnappers.
“I learned from this terrible incident and have warned myself not to wear gold at this time as the country is not as safe as it used to be.”
Undergraduate student Ms Aisha Abubakar said northern women are well known for adorning gold, such as Saudi gold, jewelry 22 karat and above.
“The surprise is that they hardly wear gold these days.
“Most women now wear costumes such as Zeconia jewelry for the safety of their lives.
“In the past, my mom couldn’t do without putting in gold, she is so addicted to gold. But she sold almost all of the gold to pay our tuition and settle some debts when the cost of selling the precious metal to merchants got so lucrative.
“Gold came as a massive relief. She is the only one to take care of the family because of the death of our father. The product has proven to be useful in solving some financial burdens.
“My mom now wears costume jewelry for the occasion.
“With the worsening security situation in the Norwegian side, some of his friends have deposited their gold in banks while others have found alternatives to protect them.
“I only have one gold earring and chain, but I stopped wearing them, especially on campus, due to fear of the unknown.
“Even when I wear them for a night out, I watch my back because they are expensive.”
Ms Bukola Adekola, a 52-year-old civil servant in Abuja, said she couldn’t do without buying the precious metal when it was affordable, just to compete with her friends.
Adekola said Yoruba women are known to wear gold.
“We invest in gold as future assets, not just to develop them.
“The last time I bought gold was when a gram was sold for N3,800.
“I disposed of all the gold I bought at N3,800 per gram last year when a friend told me that a gram was sold at N 24,000. It was like I won a jackpot because I had sold all the gold I had and was making millions of it.
“What is the essence of keeping gold at home when it becomes more and more dangerous to do so with the current insecurity in the country?
“I now wear costumes for the occasion and I’m fine with that. I invested the money in children’s education, business and the like, ”she said.
Ms Chioma Nnamdi, a nurse at a private hospital in Lagos, said her husband married her last year with a silver ring due to the high cost of the gold ring.
“We got married last year in September because we planned it before the pandemic set in. Things were very expensive and we resorted to a normal ring. It is not about a gold ring, but about the union and the love we have for each other. “
Alhaji Dahiru Abdullahi, a gold trader in Abuja, also denounced the weak patronage of gold due to the advent of COVID-19 and the economic crisis in Nigeria and around the world.
“We no longer feel rushing from customers, but people bring what they have to the market to sell. Costume jewelry is now all the rage, especially Zaconia.
“Zaconia also has second hand value, but we don’t measure them per gram for sale or when we want to buy from customers unlike gold jewelry.”
He said buying a gram of gold is an asset, adding that many people invest their capital in gold for future security.
According to him, the current price of 18 carats of new jewelry is 26,000 naira per gram, while 18 carats of fairly used jewelry is now sold at 19,000 naira per gram.
He said that 21 karats of new gold jewelry is now worth 32,000 Naira per gram and 21 karats of fairly used jewelry is sold at 21,000 Naira per gram.
“These are the current international prices. The amount that I sell gold or buy from customers is the same as that of other gold dealers. We use the international standard rate.
“We don’t fool customers because they need the money and want to sell their gold. We buy gold at the international rate then in effect.
“Prices fluctuate, but we follow international rules and standards for selling and buying.”