Yemeni post services review

The first post office was established in Yemen in 1839 in Aden. Since then, postal service has expanded and competitors from the private sector launched various national and international postal services. Yet the Posts and Postal Saving Corporation remains the most wide spread and important for many Yemenis who receive their pensions or have saving accounts with the corporation.

In 2008, The General Corporation for Post and Postal Saving established sixteen new post offices in 2008 around the republic, while 20 are currently under construction. Additionally, five modern designed offices have recently been opened in the capital Sana’a. The corporation has also increasing the working hours in those five offices to provide uninterrupted service from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. Today there are 276 offices around the republic and in 2009 a plan for establishing 60 new offices has been approved.

A speed post service, both locally and internationally, has been realized due a 72 percent increase in funding in 2007. This service has been linked with the International Postal Union for tracking sent mail, which is linked to the internet so that citizens can track the progress of mail online.

As a result, Yemeni post has been awarded the bronze prize by the Union, out of 196 potentially prize-winning member countries, for its performance in fast mail delivery service. Yemen was the only Arab country to get this prize.

Post centers and offices are working around the clock. Five working shifts for sorting, closing and sending mails on time have been organized. In addition, postal flights and improved goods transportation have been increased by 3 percent.

The Post Corporation has carried out a number of projects, at a cost of over YR 328 million. This included the purchase of new transmitting equipments for increasing the network’s output. About 424 computers and 495 printers have been also purchased for these projects. Around 1000 sets of Ethernet cables have been imported, and 49 offices have been added to the network.

The Corporation has finalized the creation of the infrastructure for A.T.M service at a total cost of YR 123 million, which will be launched soon.

Challenges

Despite the achievements, there are still a number of challenges that the postal corporation faces in its operation. Some of these problems were discussed with the director of the post corporation, Faiz Saif Abdo Said director general of Postal Affairs who provided insight into the problems.

Mistakes have occurred in the past, often due to problematic addresses where senders have written the post box number but omitted the name of the post office. Some P.O. Box numbers are repeated in Sana’a and Aden, and as a result mail has occasionally been delivered incorrectly. For this reason, the Post Corporation has decided to introduce stricter administrative procedures for the parsing of addresses, in the hope that this will reduce the frequency of mistakes occurring with ordinary letters.

No offices for women. In the past, separate windows were allocated for female customers in a number of post offices, and women have been employed in many post offices. In the near future, we hope to allocate entire offices or halls for women.

Giving checks to persons other than their owners. This is considered a breach of the law and, when such cases are discovered, disciplinary measures as extreme as firing the employee in question are taken. Nevertheless, checks are given only to real owners.

No machine cashier. "We want to assure people," said the Post Corporation, "that the A.T.M service is in its final phase. We are preparing the operational programming, and the requisite equipment is currently being set up in a number of locations throughout the capital Sana’a."

Accumulating some parcels of unclear addressed. Addresses are sought out using all available channels, including the personal experience of the local postmen in delivering mail. In case of failure, senders are asked to provide more detailed addresses, often including telephone numbers. These measures take some time, and during this legally defined period, mail is kept according to the international post treaty. If delivery proves impossible, these parcels are returned to the sender.

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