BUSINESS WRITER 26 November 2018
HARARE – Government is working on measures that will allow citizens to
obtain passports and other official documents at post offices across the
country, it has been learnt.
The latest development is likely to bring relief to millions of people
living in rural and marginalised areas, who are usually forced to travel
to towns and cities to secure official documents such as identification
Gift Machengete, the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of
Zimbabwe (Potraz) director-general, said the move will not only accelerate
government’s e-commerce project but will also ensure that post offices
remain relevant to consumers’ constantly changing needs.
“Potraz, in partnership with government’s designated postal operator,
Zimpost, is working on a model post office project, where post offices
will be transformed to offer e-government and e-commerce services all
under one roof.
“Instead of incurring transport costs to the Registrar General’s office,
under the project, communities will be able to apply for passports, birth
and death certificates and other government services at postal outlets,”
This comes as fears are abound that the post office is dying a natural
death following a significant decline is postal services.
Machengete noted that mail volumes are decreasing significantly annually
in many countries, hence postal services should reinvent themselves and
become multifaceted delivery and information companies tailored to the
“As we move from the past into the future, posts will continue to play a
significant role in our lives,” he said during the World Post Day
commemorations in Mudzi on Friday.
“But this depends on how much they will be able to transform themselves
from the traditional mailing business to a more robust business model
based on e-commerce leveraging on the wide geographical spread of the
postal network,” he said.
Zimpost’s managing director Chief Moyo said the organisation has taken
note of developments around technology disruptions and opportunities it
presents. “Zimpost has over the years diversified its product portfolio
from being predominantly traditional parcel and mail business by adapting
to technology in order to meet the ever changing customer needs,” he said.
Over the past few years, Zimpost has come up with a variety of innovative
value added products and services to meet consumer needs such as financial
services, Zimpost mall, Post insurance, Postlife funeral cash plan and
communication information centres among other things.
“Zimpost is playing an important role in the economy by enabling financial
inclusion of Zimbabweans from all walks of life,” Moyo said.
The company has transformed its money transfer services from being
telegraphic to electronic.
“This low cost money transfer service called Zipcash covers domestic and
selected international destinations such as Bostwana, Lesotho, Kenya,
Malawi, Tanzania, South Africa and Nigeria.
ICT deputy minister Jerifan Muswere, who was guest of honour at the event
which was running under the theme “The post: delivering goods to the
world”, said government was committed to ensure universal access to