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NIPOST begins intermediary e-Commerce services nationwide from tomorrow—Minister

In keeping with its aggressive fight to remain relevant in a world dominated by electronic systems, the Federal government is prevailing on ailing Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) to kick off provision of e-commerce services in Nigeria from tomorrow, the first working day in 2017.

Details provided by the Minister of Communications, Mr. Adebayo Shittu, indicated that the new arm of the agency will run side by side with its traditional service of letter and parcel distribution.

In his defence submission, the minister said “Today in Nigeria and throughout the world, individuals have set up companies for purpose of e-commerce, NIPOST has better reputation and better logistic facilities to provide this e-commerce services.

“If you are in Abuja and you want to buy something in Kano, you simply go to a NIPOST facility, pay there and then the money is transmitted to the seller anywhere they are.

“NIPOST will assist in bringing those goods you have purchased to your doorstep. This will happen through NIPOST e-commerce services.”

Continuing, he said the new idea will be of great advantage to citizens, because NIPOST has a wide reach across the country so that distance or the weight of the goods would not be a hindrance.

In his argument on the new deal for NIPOST, the Minister said ICT is the only way to go for all economies today and agencies with largest network of branches cannot be left out in a competitive world.

According to him, “ICT assists in making life better, it enables businesses to be run more efficiently and even enables governments to be run properly and more beneficially to the citizenry.

“That is why NIPOST wants to leverage on it to expand its scope of service delivery by engaging in e-commerce.

Shittu also hinted on the take off of e-government services, saying technology would be used to ensure that everybody who needed government service got it and on time.

He said, “For instance, rather than go to the passport office, if you want to renew your passport, and you know that in most states there is only one passport office you have to go from wherever you are to the state capital to get your passport renewed.

“With our NIPOST e-government services, you don’t have to go there. You go to a postal agency or a post office you pay and fill the form online and the passport is renewed for you.”

Arguing that the ministry was prepared to make good use of technology to promote good governance and engage NIPOST optimally, experts say this may be the beginning of the plan to begin banking services hinted by the same minister earlier in 2016.