By Adedotun Ajayi
Sex workers in Akure, Ondo State are also feeling the heat of the economic situation in the country spurred by the removal of fuel subsidy.
The situation has forced ‘working girls’ as they are called to slash their charges to an all-time low of N500 per stroke and N5,000 – N8,000 per night due to diminishing patronage, according to investigation by The Hope.
The Hope investigation revealed that many of the girls of easy virtues in their various locations are crying in silence over lack of patronage.
A visit across all the major hot spots in Akure, the Ondo State capital showed that there is a bad market for the trade.
It was also gathered that many of the workers after they have drastically reduced their charges were still not patronized.
A self acclaimed entrepreneur (prostitute), Tina, in one of the hot red light zones in the city, who spoke in Pidgin and English, told The Hope that, since the first week of June, she and her colleagues have been complaining of “bad market.”
“There is no money in the country. Guys are complaining, but for me, going back home after a night out is worse, wetin man pikin go do? We have to collect any pay that is offered like that. Some nights, 20 guys or more would approach me, and none of them will offer higher than N6,000 for my services a night, some would even say they won’t buy me food or drink, but what options do I have, this is what brings food to my table,” she said.
“These days, our clients don’t even come with their cars because of the current hike in fuel price, they come on bikes which is even more scary. Business has been dwindling as customers do not have the money to patronize us anymore and as such, we have been experiencing hardship.
The hardship has affected every facet of the society including our business as our customer base has diminished and the few men that seek our services do not have the money to pay.
If I tell my customers to do short time for N3,000 they say no, that they want it all through the night for N5000,” said one of the prostitutes, who gave her name as Rita.
“We supported this present administration during campaign, we came out in numbers during elections and voted, believing he was going to bring about the desired change we want, but now things have gone from bad to worse. We are the bread winners in our families and some of us have lots of responsibilities. Since this government came into power, things have sky rocketed. And to add to our woes, they have increased the fuel price, making ordinary Nigerians the worse off” said Deborah, another night worker.
Another sex worker at a joint in Alagbaka; Joy, was literally begging to be taken home by our correspondent, who priced her far below the normal. She had initially mentioned N20,000 per night before the bargaining ensued.
Joy believes that God is aware of her business and perhaps, prays each night that God will give her a good customer (sex mate).
In a telephone conversation with Sweet Baddie, one of the hookup websites said “I’m expensive, I don’t care if the economy is dwindling or not, if you can’t afford it, block me and move ahead.”
Sweet Baddie dropped her shocking price list, short time is equivalent to a bag of foreign rice, when asked why her prices were high, she said “I am the best at what I do, you can go on the website you got my number from and check my reviews, some men come running to me immediately they receive their salaries, some men are so regular that some times when they are low on cash, I let them have their way because I know they would definitely pay later, the whole increase in fuel price and the economy have not affected my own business,” she said.