By Angela Nkwocha
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has said that he would continue to fight to revert the decision that gave collection of stamp duty to Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), insisting that the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) is the right agency to be in charge of postage stamp and stamp authentication on transactions.
Pantami made this known at the 2020 World Post Day and Launching of Compendium of Nigeria Postage Stamps (100years)1914 -2014, at the weekend in Abuja.
“We will continue to fight within the confine of the law to get NIPOST what belongs to it. I have written to my boss Mr. President (Muhammadu Buhari) five times, I have raised the issue at FEC meeting four times and I have written to the Minister of Finance three times over the issue. We will not stop until justice is done”, the minister said.
Pantami further averred that the Federal Government had commenced reforms in NIPOST to make it a huge revenue generating agency.
According to him, two limited liability companies have been carved out of the postal service and a third one would come up before December.
While noting that the agency faces challenges because of poor staff strength he gave the assurance that he has given directives to start the unbundling of NIPOST adding that NIPOST reform bill is in progress as well as the automation of NIPOST activities.
In his address, the Postmaster General of the Federation, Dr Ismail Adebayo said the Post Service occupies a very unique position in every country.
“To underscore that the Post continues to serve as an essential instrument of economic and social development in Nigeria, the Federal Government has embarked on a comprehensive reform of the Postal Sector to make it responsive to customers’ demands through provision of high quality and affordable universal postal service to the citizenry”, he said.
He said in the last three years, over 120 motor bikes were purchased for the last mile delivery and 32 Toyota Corolla vehicles were purchased with the IGR of the organization and distributed to the Zonal Heads and District Managers for marketing purposes.
He added that a total of 5,310 metric tons of mail items were redistributed across the country in the last one year.
Adebayo lauded NIPOST reform stressing that it has brought positive changes in the agency’s operations.