The idea that the advent of Internet Communication Technology (CT) has rendered the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) irrelevant in information dissemination and related functions has since collapsed in the face of strong evidence to the contrary. Rather, facts have shown that Global System Mobile (GSM) and Internet are just complements to NIPOST in discharging its functions of information dissemination and related services. The question on the lips of Nigerians now is: how can we reposition our NIPOST to provide employment and generate revenue for government as in other advanced sphere? Since we have seen that the issue with NIPOST is not that the advancement in technology has affected its operational efficiency, but rather, lack of political will on the part of government to do the needful, proper funding of the outfit to function effectively and efficiently.
Although, successive governments in Nigeria have tried in keeping the Postal System alive, but more effort still needs to be invested in the subsector. It is on record that in terms of spread, after the Police institution that has their station everywhere in Nigeria, NIPOST closely follows Police in terms of spread. This is major advantage the outfit enjoys, and this will reduce the burden of government in terms of investment in the subsector, should it decides to fund the outfit.
As step towards this all important repositioning, outstanding legislations aimed at removing the impediments holding the establishment from moving forward, should be urgently given attention. To this end, the National Assembly should be up doing in this regard. For instance, the Postal Commission Bill currently at NASS should be given urgent attention. The current Stamp Duty amendment bill before the National Assembly should also be given speedy attention. It is also suggested that relevant legislation(s) should be put in place to make NIPOST an Independent Agency of government like the United States of America’s Postal Service.
A careful look at the indices that made six (6) postal outfits in advanced climes global players in business shows that NIPOST can easily be among the global players. Firstly, all the six postal establishments provide Postal Services which include, Letter post/Parcel service; they provide also, haulage services. All these services are provided by NIPOST too. The only difference in service between NIPOST and those Postal outfits in advanced sphere are Financial Services, Mobile Net work Service, Shipping and allied Services.
Incidentally, all other services not provided by NIPOST are the ones that put the advanced postal outfits in pole position in terms of employment generation and these are services that can easily be provided by NIPOST. For instance, NIPOST has been struggling to start Banking Service and with its vast outlets throughout the length and breadth of Nigeria, going into banking business will be very easy. The Postal establishment can still venture into Mobile Network provision because of the same offices it has everywhere in Nigeria; the added advantage of being under the Communication Ministry makes it even imperative now. In a nutshell, NIPOST is a huge outfit for both revenue and employment generation like other postal establishments in other climes.
Since President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB) led administration has made youths employment its cardinal objective, it is imperative the administration invests in NIPOST to play the role of employment generation. It is beyond debate that Postal establishments in USA, Britain, Italy, Japan, Germany, China and Canada just to mention but few, are the pride of these nations in terms of both revenue and employment generation.
Finally, it is important to bring this very interesting piece of news to those skeptics of NIPOST ability to provide employment that was published byPostandparcel.info on Tuesday, July 26th, 2016. it reads: “China Post has been celebrating its new ranking close to the top 100 of Fortune magazine’s Global 500 list.
It is the first time that China Post was listed among top-three postal enterprises of the world, along with America Post [US Postal Service] and Japan Post, hitting its target of entering the top ranks of global postal enterprises ahead of schedule.”
Now, these are services provided by Chinese Postal Service: Letter post, parcel service, EMS, delivery, freight-forwarding, third-party logistics, deposit accounts.
The question now is which of these services is beyond NIPOST’s ability to provide? The answer is, none. The time for action is now!
•Oraetoka, wrote in from Garki- Abuja via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org