Director-General, BPE, Bolanle Onagoruwa
The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) has concluded plans to embark on a comprehensive reform of the postal sector.
It was gathered that the new postal sector policy reform would ensure the separation of the roles of policy making from sector regulation and operations.
The Director-General, BPE, Bolanle Onagoruwa, who gave this hint last week, said the new policy has been approved by the National Council on Privatisation (NCP) and currently awaiting the approval of the Federal Executive Council (FEC).
According to Onagoruwa, who was represented at the Fourth Bowill Errands public lecture held in Lagos by the Director, Information and Communication, Mr. Allwell Ibeh, the postal sector is a critical part of the country’s information and communication technology (ICT) infrastructure and crucial in the new economy.
She added that the declining mail volumes and increasing competition from private sector operators have rendered core postal services financially unsustainable.
She disclosed that the reform encompasses policy review and formulation of sector policy, development and adaptation of a new legislative and regulatory framework, and restructuring of Public Postal Operator (NIPOST).
“The objectives of the reform are to establish a low cost universal postal service that provides a solid communication medium and link nation-wide; provide a safe and efficient postal service that is sustainable and keeps pace with development in the rest of the world; introduce private sector participation and the development of the postal service into a commercially viable enterprise, and create a convenient means of savings mobilization and payment/funds transfer system for the entire country through the postal network,” she said.
Under the reform, the sector regulation is to be undertaken by an independent regulator, there will be designation of NIPOST as the Public Postal Operator while the post office network would be made suitable for the provision of public interests services.
She said there would also be establishment of Universal Postal Sector Fund and Universal Postal Services Board that would administer the Universal Postal Sector Fund.
The BPE boss, however, pointed out that NIPOST privatisation is not desirable and feasible in the short run, stressing that corporatisation, commercialisation and public private partnerships (PPP) would by far help NIPOST to achieve economic viability, attract investment and improve corporate governance.
“The passage of the Postal Bill, implementation and adoption of the Act and effective and efficient restructuring of NIPOST is the panacea for sustaining the postal sector in Nigeria,” she said.