Functioning service needed

Anthony Pamm,
Camps Bay

For business to function
properly and for the
economy to recover
and also for private
citizens to be properly
serviced, South Africa
needs a properly
functioning national
postal service. 

Currently the South
African Post Office
(SAPO) is not providing
this, at least not in my
area in Cape Town
(and Covid-19 does not
provide an adequate
excuse). 

Local mail is coming
through to my PO Box
in insufficient trickles
and the only mail so
far received at my
street address has been
collection slips for that
sent by registered post,
which has to be collected
at the post office.
Overseas mail is
not coming through at
all. 

Mail known to have
been posted to me from
London in March, April
and May have not yet
arrived.
It is no excuse at all
to blame lack of flights
since many cargo planes
and some repatriation planes are and have been
flying and it took DHL
Couriers a mere two days
to get some documents
from Cape Town to a
provincial town in the
UK. 

Mail from the UK
is known to be getting
through to other
countries other than
South Africa, albeit with
some delay.
Someone who
posted a card from the
USA ( where the mail
is working) to Cape
Town recently had it
returned to her with an
annotation that there
was no service to South
Africa. 

Various SAPO
telephone numbers in
Cape Town have not
been functional in recent
times.
If Covid-19 has meant
that fewer people can
work at one time at
sorting centres, then
additional shifts should
have been introduced.
South Africa deserves
better. 

Emma Tshatsinde,
South African Post
Office, responds: 

The SA Post Office
is a government entity
that is in the business
of logistics and delivery
of mail and parcels
reaching almost 2
million parcels in a day. 

Unfortunately this has
been negatively affected due to the regulations
we had to follow after
the lockdown which
was announced by
President Cyril Matamela
Ramaphosa. 

Our national
lockdown began on
March 27 as level 5 and
we need to reinforce to
our customers that some
of the international
countries that we trade
with, had already started
their lockdown earlier,
meaning there was
no trade between us
and them when our
lockdown was enforced. 

Over and above this
impact, when we were
allowed to open our mail
centres and depots at the
start of level 3, we could
only operate at 33%
capacity. 

This has currently
changed and we are
bringing more and
more employees back
to the workforce to try
and move the items that
are in the mail centres
and depots to the retail
outlets where the items
will be collected by the
clients. 

The Western Cape is
pleased to announce that
a temporary Covid-19
shift structure has been
agreed for the Capemail
Mail Centre that will
enable all staff to be back
at work adhering to strict
Covid-19 protocols with
effect from Tuesday August 11. 

We cannot deny the
fact that we have been
experiencing growing
carry-over volumes
and we are confident
that with these new
working restructurings,
the backlogs will be
significantly reduced
with the ultimate goal of
clearing them. 

The introduction of
these shifts is therefore
vital for the assurance
of our continued
sustainability.
Since we have
introduced an increase
in the workforce, that
means we will have a lot
more people assisting
customers, including
those who wish to reach
us telephonically or via
email. 

The call centre can
be reached at 0860 111
502 or 021 590 3111,
while those who wish to
send an email can do so
at customer.services@
postoffice.co.za Clients
who also wish to make
use of the Speed Services
option can contact 0860
023 0133. 

We are hopeful
that this shift structure
will enable the mail
centre to return to full
processing capacity
while maintaining
the necessary social
distancing and hygiene
protocols to protect
the safety of our staff
members.