Pantami Suspends Increment Of Licence Fee By NIPOST
The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami has suspended the recent increment of license fee for courier service operators in Nigeria.
It will be recalled that NIPOST had increased new license fees for International Courier services to N20million; National Courier services to N10million; Regional Courier services to N5million; State Courier services to N2million; Municipal Courier services to N1million and Special SME Courier services to N250,000.
The increment did not go down well with the Courier companies and Nigerians as it will affect cost of sending parcels and probably discourage many using Courier services.
In series of Tweet to respond to the complaint of Nigerians, the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Pantami tweets “Pls @NipostNgn, our attention has been drawn to an increase of licence fee, which was not part of the regulation I earlier APPROVED for you. Your Chair and PMG were YESTERDAY contacted to put the implementation on hold and send a report to our ministry by Monday. Best wishes!
“2) @NipostNgn, d power of regulation of NIPOST lies with the Minister. Any change of fee must be specific & be approved by him before implementation. I know the economic challenges of NIPOST. However, looking at the economic hardship of our citizens, we need to suspend any move
In response to Swift Reporters comment “that NIPOST shares the same market with the courier companies, it is an interested party, it lacks the powers to regulate an industry in which it is an active participant, only the Ministry can do that in the absence of regulatory agency, If the matter get to court, NIPOST will loose.”
Pantami responded, “We have already approved the process of separating the Regulation from Service. The delay of implementation arises from the stages of following due process. Best wishes!”
The Nigeria Postal service Department came into being with the establishment of the Nigeria Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) on January 1, 1985. NITEL emerged from the merger of the Telecommunications arm of the defunct Post and Telecommunications Department of the Ministry of Communications with the former Nigeria External Telecommunications Limited (NET). Through the promulgation of decree No. 18 of 1987, NIPOST became an Extra-Ministerial Department.
The decree provided among other functions of NIPOST, the following:
- To provide and operate facilities for collection, dispatch and distribution of inland and overseas mail at reasonable cost.
- To provide and operate facilities for remittance of money through the money or postal order systems.
- To provide and operate philatelic services in Nigeria.
- To print and provide postage stamps for payment of postage tariff and payment of stamp duties.
- To represent Nigeria in its relations with other postal administrations and other bodies concerned with postal services. Prior to 1992, NIPOST operated as an Extra-Ministerial Department in the Ministry of Communications while Decree 18 of 1987 went through various amendments.
In response to the call to grant NIPOST some measure of autonomy, the Federal Government promulgated Decree 41 of 1992 and classified NIPOST as a Government Parastatal having the following basic functions:
- To develop, promote, and provide adequate and efficiently coordinated postal services at reasonable rates.
- To maintain an efficient system of collection, sorting and delivery of mail nationwide.
- To provide various types of mail services to meet the needs of different categories of mailers.
- To establish and maintain Postal facilities of such character and in such locations consistent with reasonable economics as will enable the generality of the public to have ready access to essential postal services.
- To represent the Federal Republic of Nigeria is her relations with other Postal Administrations and International bodies.
In addition to the above stated functions, NIPOST also has powers:
- To determine the need for Post Offices, Postal facilities and equipment as it may determine.
- To prescribe the amount of postage stamps and the manner in which it is to be paid.
- To provide Philatelic Services.
- To establish and review Postal Tariff.
- To explore additional services to boost its revenue.
- To provide and establish non-postal or similar services