Kenya: Senate Pours Cold Water on Posta Revival Strategy

8 October 2020

The Senate Wednesday dismissed as a shot in the dark plans by the Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK) to revive itself after years of mismanagement and failing to adapt to technological changes.

Members said the corporation's presentation was just a formality predicting its folding up if it continues on the same path.

Senators chided Posta's management and Information Communication and Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru when they presented the firm's recovery strategy Wednesday, cautioning that it would not heal any of their deep self-inflicted wounds.

The CS and Postmaster General Dan Kagwe told the committee among key issues in consideration was laying off staff, seeking government bailout to pay the close to Sh6 billion debt PCK owes and seeking to tap e-commerce.

"This recovery strategy is not even inspiring. Whatever they are doing is just a routine," said Mombasa senator Mohammed Faki.

The pair had been called by the committee on ICT to appraise it on general affairs at the corporation and "indicating whether it is able to meet its future financial obligations relating to staff salaries and other labour obligations."

The team had also asked the corporation to present its strategic plan for the next five years.

But senators felt the corporation's strategy would not work, warning of the high possibility that it would eventually die.

Senators observed that Posta's problems were there even before it was hit by Covid-19 pandemic and that its management had led to it losing markets to private players who are more efficient.

They said a plan by the corporation to fire staff massively would not heal its misfortunes.

"This plan will go nowhere. People must begin to learn from history. Institutions that have used the strategy of layoffs as a strategy to survive collapsed. Renovate service delivery and get an inspired board to come back strongly," said Kitui senator Enock Wambua.

Mr Wambua observed that the situation at Posta was gloomy, saying "it needs serious thinking. Otherwise very soon we will be nailing the last nail to the coffin."

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