Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies, announced on Friday, October 9 that her department is in talks to introduce a number of new features into the National Post Office. These include the ability to renew licenses, passports and ID’s.
The announcement was made in a media statement celebrating World Post Day and explained the potential new offerings that will be both be ‘digitally-focused’, and include a number of services which are usually conducted by the Department of Home Affairs.
In order to achieve this goal, Ndabeni-Abrahams said post offices will need to re-position its e-commerce strategy in order to enhance intra-African trade under the new African Continental Free Trade Agreement and to become a driver of global exports.
“Among some of the government services which the Post Office wishes to provide in the immediate future includes but not limited to the renewal of driver’s licences and applications for ID books and passports at its branches. But even more importantly, ensuring that the department and government achieve their objectives of building a digitally connected society,” she said in the statement.
The national post office also plan on expand its role in e-commerce and intends to launch a platform for online shopping within the next few months, aimed specially at facilitating interaction between small craftsmen and traders in South Africa and buyers.
Before the Covid-19 lockdown, the Post Office delivered around two million items per day. This figure is expected to grow as the economy normalises and pick up again in the future as things return to normal.
“Given its massive and extensive infrastructure and presence in almost corners of the country, including the rural areas, there is growing need for government to make use of the SA Post Office to enhance the delivery of people-centred services. And those discussions are positively underway.”