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Ismail Adewusi shares NIPOST transformation journey from recovery to innovation

NIPOST is working assiduously to remain a veritable force, one to reckon with in the courier and logistics industry – Dr. Adewusi

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Dr. Ismail Adeboye Adewusi, NIPOST
Dr. Ismail Adeboye Adewusi, the PostMaster General/CEO of the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST), speaking during a press conference

Dr. Ismail Adeboye Adewusi, the PostMaster General/CEO of the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) is spearheading a rebooting of the service for greater contributions to the country’s economy, TechEconomy.ng can report.

In December 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari’s letter of appointment was presented by Prof. Isa Pantami, the minister of Communications and Digital Economy, to Dr. Ismail Adewusi as the Postmaster General of the Federation and CEO of NIPOST.

Today, NIPOST is working assiduously to remain a veritable force, one to reckon with in the courier and logistics industry.

The Service under Adewusi’s leadership has continued to make itself available to work in partnership with other related agencies, both government and private sector, to ensure they provide reliable and efficient services for the socioeconomic development of the country.

Speaking during a breakfast media parley in Abuja to mark the beginning of activities in commemoration of his two years in office as the Postmaster General of the Federation, the PMG, said that on resumption, he made a commitment to leave a legacy in NIPOST.

“At the inception of this administration, we made a serious appraisal of the Post in Nigeria vis-a-vis other postal administrations.

“We engaged ourselves in a thorough review of the corporate vision, with the aim of giving a better focus to timely, measurable and sustainable performance.

“However, my strategy for the immediate revival of the organization suffered a setback almost instantly, with the World going into lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This practically threw NIPOST like all other organizations into a recession.

“The pandemic changed the way things were done. A ‘’new normal’’ emerged, and the organization needed to show great resilience by tweaking its mode of operations, in order to meet the needs of our customers during the ravaging pandemic. We had to re-strategize for NIPOST to adapt to the changing business environment, and make the organization better equipped to meet the customers’ ever-changing aspirations”.

Continuing, Adewusi said that NIPOST management, under his leadership, identified Public Private Partnership (PPP) as one of the ways forward as going-it-alone; a solo approach to doing business, would be less efficient, especially in a time resources crunch, and maybe unsustainable.

“It then meant the onboarding of other non-core businesses, through partnerships to meet customers’ needs and achieve diversification.

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NIPOST’s achievements in the last 24 months under the leadership of Dr. Adewusi:

“In the area of operation and logistics, the quantum leap in e-commerce necessitated drastic measures to cope with the surge in parcels/packet deliveries. NIPOST collaborated with a number of private transporters and logistics companies like Speedaf to ensure seamless deliveries.

“Recently six (6) additional new high tonnage trucks were acquired for e-commerce and logistics.

This acquisition has greatly boosted the quality of service. Just as the collaboration with Speedaf Logistics Nigeria Limited, has led to the addition of twenty-seven (27) new 10, 20, and 30 tonnage trucks into our fleet.

He said that in a bid to expand the frontiers of NIPOST products and services, a B2B agreement was signed with eGATE of Egypt on digital transformation.

NIPOST and eGate partnership

Dr Ismail Adewusi, the Postmaster General of NIPOST and Essam Alsaghir, the CEO of eGate

With this agreement, job opportunities will be created. According to the NIPOST boss, it will also help to address the infrastructure gap in the organization, and reposition NIPOST on the path of full digitalization.

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Postage Stamp

“In the last two years, several stamps were produced in collaboration with private partners. Notable among them are the Bangladesh High Commission and Indian High Commission, who commissioned NIPOST to issue a set of commemorative postage stamps in honour of their nation’s founding fathers, which were unveiled during Bangladesh Independence Anniversary and 150th birthday of Mahatma Gandhi of India, respectively.

Stamp Duty

Prof. Isa Pantami (middle) leading other delegation at the unveiling of Nigeria at 60 Stamp Duty

“The production and unveiling of a Commemorative Postage Stamp and the launching of Compendium of Nigerian Postage Stamps (1914-2014) by the Honourable Minister of Communications & Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami were part of the programme marking the special occasion of Nigeria’s 60th Independence Anniversary.

“Furthermore, NIPOST in collaboration with the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), released a single set of postage stamp on the 45th Anniversary of the agency. The event was marked with pomp and pageantry in Abuja.

“We produced Revenue Stamp dedicated to the denotation and authentication of transactions and fees, in line with the powers conferred on NIPOST by the amended Finance Act 2020.

“On another frontier, NIPOST signed an agreement with the West African Examination Council (WAEC) to deliver certificates in Nigeria to private candidates for whom it was then no longer necessarily to travel long distances just to collect their certificates from the examination body.

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NIPOST driving digital inclusion:

The Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) has been providing financial services over five decades.

“However, with the advent of Information Technology (IT) and revolution in the financial service industry, the traditional instrument of remittances gave way to electronic means of payments.

He said that in achieving the financial inclusion strategy of the Federal Government of Nigeria to increase financial access points in Nigeria, NIPOST has continue to play a critical role through its vast spread of outlets across the country.

“In 2019, it secured the status of Super-Agent and International Money Transfer Operator (MTO) from the Central Bank of Nigeria.

These licenses have enabled the organisation to go into collaboration with Fintech, FSP, NCS, IMTOs and Remita with a view to developing an agnostic platform, set for roll out in the first quarter of 2022.

“The platform provides a template for a “one stop shop”, where customers can go and have services such as withdrawals, deposits, transfers, international remittances, bill payments, insurance services and other forms of financial services to serve different segments of the population.

Some of the giant strides taken by NIPOST are:

  • Western Union Money Transfer which commences pilot operations in Lagos in 2020.

 

  • Reconciliation of account with Cameroon Post (Campost), culminating in the resumption of international remittance transactions which, in a short period, has accrued over ₦10,000,000 in revenue.

 

  • Joining of UPU Clearing House, from which Nigeria had been removed, before our time, to facilitate expansion of remittance transaction beyond the Cameroon Nigeria corridor, with the potential revenue increase.
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  • Roll out of co-branded credit/debit card card with Data Mining.

 

  • Payment services partnership, with System Specs, which allows NIPOST to carry out bill payment using Remita on its counters.

 

  • Promotion of NIPOST card for seamless IFS transactions with more UPU member countries.

Also, the African Development Bank (AFDB) sought partnership with NIPOST to drive agricultural transformation in Africa’s economy with the Special Agro-Industrial processing Zones (SAPZ) initiative.

“The objective being to produce large stocks of marketable products using NIPOST’s warehousing, logistics and financial services. With this initiative, we, as an organization, seek to contribute to the economic development of the country while also expanding our revenue base.

NIPOST International operations:

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The Nigerian Postal Service serves as a gateway to inbound and outbound parcels/packets which, incidentally, some unscrupulous elements within and outside the country may want to use to perpetrate their nefarious activities.

Speaking to this, the CEO of NIPOST said:

“To guide against such, a high-capacity scanning machine have been installed at our International Mail Processing Centre (IMPC) at NAHCO wing of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja.

“This has paid off as several illegal items, hard drugs and other unauthorised gadgets for criminality were intercepted and handed over to the appropriate government agencies.

He pledged that NIPOST under his watch did not stop at this; “we also pursued collaboration with the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), culminating in a courtesy visit to the Chairman/CEO Brig. General Muhammad Buba Marwa (Rtd.), where we renewed our cooperation in the fight against illicit drug use and trafficking in country.

“In another of such efforts, management of NIPOST paid a working visit to the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Abdurasheed Bawa. NIPOST management re-established its collaboration towards the interception of scam mails and prevention of other financial crimes through the Post.

NIPOST is currently represented on the Board of the EFCC.

“We also entered partnership with the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA), to enhance postal service delivery through collaboration for improved efficiency of the Nigerian Post Code System.

“It would interest you to note that the new addressing system, that is, the Digital Addressing system, is being developed as a strategic infrastructure for national development. It will facilitate mail handling, identify locations precisely, ensure consistency in address related databases and enable efficient services in government agencies, financial institutions, and businesses in a consistent manner.

Adewusi reeled out various measures aimed at putting NIPOST on a pedestal of growth which the management team has worked hard with perseverance.

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Postal Reform Bill:

The PMG also expressed delight that after nineteen (19) years, a new Courier Regulations was presented and approved for the regulation of the courier industry.

The last such review of the Regulations was in 2001.

“The new Regulations empowers NIPOST to regulate the courier and logistics industry, checkmate the activities of illegal and nefarious logistics and courier companies in the country.

“The new Regulations would sanitize the logistics ecosystem and put in check dubious activities of the criminal-minded operators.

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“Another milestone is the passage and signing of the amended Finance Act, 2020 by President Muhammadu Buhari to affirm NIPOST’s role in the administration of Stamp Duty in Nigeria.

“It is gratifying for us to note that NIPOST (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill was passed by the Senate and House of the Representatives. I am of great belief, that the Bill, when assented by President Muhammad Buhari GCFR, will reposition NIPOST for better service delivery”, he said.

NIPOST at the international level:

Universal Postal Union, Pantami

Prof. Isa Pantami, minister, Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, displaying Nigeria’s award at UPU congress

At the international level, at the 27th session of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) Convention in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria was elected to the Council of Administration (CA) and the Postal Operation Council (POC) of the world body.

The last time Nigeria was a member of any UPU committee was ten (10) years ago, in 2012.

At the African level, Nigeria emerged the second Vice Chairman of the Pan-African Postal Union (PAPU), at the 10th session held at Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

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More transformations at NIPOST…postal offices, workforce

“In last two years, some of our Post offices have been transformed into smart post offices, they include Awe, Eruwa, Omu-Aran, Gombe, Oshogbo, Ogbomoso, Ado Ekiti, Enugu Post offices. We want to transform the Post offices into hubs, a one-stop-shop, where citizens can access a number of e-government services like application for driver’s license, international passport, NIN registration etc.

“This idea has become indispensable in the new – normal world we live today.

“Also, the Nigerian Postal Service, under my supervision, has established its first digital centre in Enugu, which features computer-based training test (CBT) centre, and other online transaction platforms.

“An organization’s success is directly tied to its workforce. I have long believed that key success factor for any strategic programme is the availability of human resource capacity to turn the strategic intentions into reality.

“A well-motivated workforce would provide better result. For this reason, one objective I resiliently sought to achieve during these past two years was a review of the staff condition of service.

“I also ensured that promotion exercise was conducted as when due to motivate the work force, and for the first time in the history of NIPOST, some heads of departments, who had hitherto stop at Deputy Director level, were upgraded to the rank of Directorship.

“The recent exercise produced 12 Directors, 23 Deputy Directors, 48 Assistant Directors and efforts are being made to train/retrain the workforce in our training Institute and in other human capacity building Institutions.

“Giving the modest achievements we have recorded in the last two years of my administration; it is my candid belief that we are on the right track and determined to reposition NIPOST to an enviable height for effective service delivery to the citizenry.

Continuing, he said that as the economy braces up to confront emerging challenges in the digital world, NIPOST is working assiduously to remain a veritable force, one to reckon with in the courier and logistics industry.

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“We will be available to work in partnership with other related agencies, both government and private sector, to ensure we provide reliable and efficient services for the socioeconomic development of our country”, the PMG/CEO of NIPOST said.

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