Post Office seems incapable of clearing chronic mail backlog
The CEO of the South African Post Office, Mark Barnes, was interviewed on SAfm on September 28 concerning the chronic backlog of undelivered overseas mail at the Johannesburg International Mail Centre (JIMC).
For a CEO purported to earn an annual salary of R4.2m, his response was completely unacceptable.
He did not dispute the fact that delays of four to six months in our mail delivery are now commonplace. All he could say is that the arrival of overseas mail through OR Tambo airport is 2.5-million items a day and that the JIMC is clearing “about 4-million items per day”.
He then acknowledged that the traditional Christmas overload is only two months away but offered no plan to avoid a meltdown at the JIMC.
In the private sector, this miserable performance would be viewed as a massive corporate failure and rescue targets would be set. Why is this not happening at the JIMC?
Productive mail sorting is a critical integration of labour-intensive functions and mechanisation. Barnes did not mention labour relations, but it would be a huge mistake to underestimate the potential contribution of his staff if properly motivated.
Certainly if the workforce were given attractive incentive targets their productivity would improve and the mail backlog would evaporate.
As consumers, we must not accept this most depressing forecast from Barnes. Millions of South Africans still depend on the prompt arrival of critical documents for confirmation of job acceptance, pensions eligibility, voter registration and financial credibility, which are now in jeopardy.
Urgent rescue action is required now, and the financial ratings agencies are watching.
M Johnson, Hillcrest
Another socialist pipe dream
Sifiso Skenjana’s column “Rising poverty brings urgency to universal basic income debate” (September 30) refers. Oh, good. Another socialist dream that promises to cure all ills. Because we don’t have enough of those already.
So let’s see ... at a minimum of R1,000 monthly, if we add the economically inactive to the labour force, that’s 37-million people. Or about R440bn a year. Which we are going to get from where exactly? David de Beer, on Businesslive
No progress without education
An economy can’t be a magic wand, unless people are well-skilled and trained to offer their craftsmanship, professional services and products. Only people can make an economy prosper. Blindly hoping things will turn out well is a nebulous dream.
SA needs functional schools and vocational training centres to equip the youth with much-needed trade skills. Without them, how are we going to build our economy?
It’s unfortunate that our schools, particularly those catering mostly for African children, have been rendered dysfunctional by a politicised teachers’ union.
The current set-up is not sustainable. Without genuine interventions, there’s likely to be an implosion that will adversely affect us all, irrespective of social status. Sithembiso Malusi Mahlaba, Vryheid