SOLOMON Islands Postal Corporation violated the Universal Postal Union Convention when it temporarily closed its Auki office in Malaita.
That’s according to former deputy chief executive officer Sione Kelly.
He said under the convention, Solomon Post is required to give a three-month notice to the public about closing its office before it could do so.
“By failing to meet this requirement, Solomon Post has violated an international convention that every postal service organisation needs to adhere to,” Mr Kelly said.
The Auki post office was temporarily closed towards the end of last year.
This was after a number of businesses located around the post office fence off their arrears as they begin new construction, making accessibility to the office difficult.
Mr Kelly said: “The failure of the postal management to announce the closing down of the Auki Post office three months prior to its closing is an act of confusion and misinterpretations of the regulatory principles.
“Solomon Post is only an operator and since the national government owned Solomon Post as the regulator, the announcement of closing down Auki Post Office rests with the minister responsible.”
Mr Kelly said questions that arise from this issue are:
- Whether the management of Solomon Post had notified the International Bureau, the Administrative Arms of the Union to warn against undelivered items which Solomon Post is causing through the circle of Mail circulation and the standard of Delivery that the UPU is imposing throughout the UPU circle that Solomon Post is closing down certain Delivery Offices in the Country.
- Does the management of Solomon Post ever know that the Inbound Mails (Over Sea Mails) are paid for by other Designate Operators according to the UPU Acts through the Internal Air Conveyance Resolution? And Delaying of Mails is an Act of violations?
- What Solomon Post is doing with the Letters, Packets and Parcels that are coming from Overseas and elsewhere that are bound for Malaita Province and Auki Post Office?
- Where did Solomon Post deliver those Letters, Packets and Parcels etc since Auki Post office is closing down?
- What did you do with the Outbound Mails from Malaita Province and Auki Post Office? Where did you prepare your Despatches?
- How would you explained to the Government, the Business Communities, the NGO’S, the Schools, the Churches and the individuals who are paying for their Post Office Boxes that Solomon Post earns as revenue, who have been expecting delivery service in their PO Boxes?
- Didn’t Solomon Post realise that it is providing an Insufficient and an unreliable Postal Service by delaying peoples’ properties?
He added Solomon Post competencies in the Mail Delivery Services were below expectancies:
- There is no Standard of Delivery System in placed
- There is no End to End Process
- There is no On time Delivery Service for Mails that are bound for Malaita and Auki Post Office where Denied Deliveries
- Ignorance and disrespect of peoples belongings
- Unreliable and insufficient Delivery Service
“Auki Post Office is the one and the only post office that’s being allocated to serve Malaita Province and by closing it down just like that is totally denying the service to the people of Malaita especially to the business communities,” Mr Kelly said.
Meanwhile, chief executive officer Allan Arafoa explained the closure was due to the fencing off done by surrounding business houses.
He said this resulted in lack of access to the post office.
“We are left in a situation where we can’t do anything but just to close down the office,” he said.
He said he had held discussions with the Commissioner of Land and the premier of Malaita about the situation.
“We need open space that is accessible to the public,” Mr Arafoa said.
By STEPHEN DIISANGO