Stamp­ing our feet in frus­tra­tion

Financial Mail - - YOU SAID... - Dave Forster Eden­vale

There are a few pil­lars of democ­racy that sup­port the coun­tries in which we live (ju­di­cial sys­tem, Trea­sury, rev­enue ser­vice, power sup­pli­ers, trans­port en­ter­prises), and SA is fail­ing some­what in re­spect of some. How­ever, some things are not pil­lars; they are the very foun­da­tions on which a coun­try stands. The post of­fice is one of them.

The post of­fice has not worked ef­fi­ciently for more than four or five years, and since Mark Barnes was put in charge it has be­come worse.

For ex­am­ple:

● The few let­ters I re­ceive by post are to­tally out of date (my mu­nic­i­pal bill reg­u­larly ar­rives a month late);

● I re­ceived an SA Na­tional Roads Agency in­voice on De­cem­ber 12 that was dated Novem­ber 2;

● Some of us or­der prod­ucts over the in­ter­net. This used to work. Now, if I or­der some­thing from Sin­ga­pore, for ex­am­ple, it takes up to three days to clear that coun­try. It then dis­ap­pears into a black hole when it gets to SA. I can track it ar­riv­ing at OR Tambo; it then goes to cus­toms; from there it goes to a cen­tral pro­cess­ing fa­cil­ity in Jo­han­nes­burg. If I ever get this ar­ti­cle, it will have taken up to four months to ar­rive; and

● Over­seas mag­a­zines have to be sent by courier as the post of­fice can­not be trusted to de­liver. This ap­plies to lo­cal mag­a­zines as well.

Now the ANC gov­ern­ment in its wis­dom has given the most in­com­pe­tent state-owned en­tity and the most in­com­pe­tent CEO (Barnes) the re­spon­si­bil­ity of cre­at­ing a new bank and be­ing re­spon­si­ble for SA So­cial Se­cu­rity Agency pay­ments. Barnes has not been able to get the post of­fice to do one ba­sic thing (mail de­liv­ery) right.

It’s a hard world out there, and it’s get­ting worse. SA can­not com­pete if it has peo­ple like this in charge.

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