Maintaining communication with friends and family is no doubt top priority for everyone, especially those living out of the country.
It is therefore no surprise that many people opt for quicker and faster communication via phones and emails over the traditional way of posting letters through the Post Office.
This may simply be interpreted as one way of how modern technology has affected postal business. However, postal operators believe they are benefiting more from the advance technologies.
According to the Commercial Director of the National Post Office of Rwanda, Dieudonne Maniragaba, ICT has actually complemented the postal business.
“Internet is not a competitor to us; it’s just a solution that has instead helped us improve our service delivery to our clientele and has made our work much faster,” Maniragaba said.
According to him, some members of the public harbour a false impression of the Post Office believing that its business is solely confined to courier services.
“The Post Office still has a good number of clientele and that’s because we do a wide range of activities, not just sending and receiving letters. Our target is commercial and administrative letters of which we have so many clients that still require our services,” Maniragaba explained. He enumerated other services such as delivery of parcels, packages, express mail, money transfer, courier services among others.
He noted that their potential market includes government institutions, NGOs, embassies and the general public.
Maniragaba said that the postal services now reach a wider population compared to the past years.
“We used to deliver couriers up to the district level but we have now gone as far as sectors and various institutions. We also use the tracking system which is IT-based, to ensure efficient delivery of packages up to sector level,” he explained.
He added that the National Post Office is still going strong and now boasts of over 152 employees whose salary is paid through the profits the parastatal makes and not the Government budget.
Maniragaba stated that they have branches in all districts and intend to roll out e-Commerce services to improve trade facilitation and simplify trade procedures.
Based on the Kigali master plan, the Post Office aims to start home delivery of letters and parcels in the near future.