92 more Post Offices closed as SAPO can’t pay landlords

  • It has been revealed that a further 92 Post Offices have been closed locally.
  • According to details shared in a recent Portfolio Committee meeting, the majority of closures resulted from failures to pay landlords.
  • This information surfaced on the back of the South African Post Office being allocated R2.4 billion during the 2023 Budget Speech.

Last week Finance Minister, Enoch Godongwana, delivered his 2023 Budget Speech, with much of the focus centred around the country’s ongoing energy crisis. One of the other concerning elements of the Speech, was the fact that R2.4 billion has been allocated to the South African Post Office (SAPO) which has struggled severely in terms of service delivery in recent years.

Now it has been revealed that this ailing entity has closed a further 92 Post Offices, with the information surfacing during a recent Portfolio Committee meeting, according to the DA.

With SAPO’s debts estimated to be R5.4 billion, the aforementioned figure per the Budget Speech only somewhat addresses the myriad issues at the entity.

“The South African Post Office is allocated R2.4 billion. The allocations for these state-owned companies will be accompanied by strict conditions to ensure sustainability, accountability and transparency. If the conditions are not met, the money will not flow,” noted Godongwana.

At the same meeting, it was also revealed that of the 92 Post Offices, 50 have been closed as a result of continued failure to pay landlords. The DA adds that by its count, some 105 Post Offices are inaccessible to SAPO at this time as a result of mismanagement.

The party also shared some more concerning figures regarding the current state of affairs at SAPO in a mail sent out to newsletter subscribers:

  • The electricity has been cut at 22 Post Offices,
  • SAPO is in court over 341 cases of non-payment,
  • SAPO is reportedly in arrears to the amount of R338 200 000,
  • 42 of the 92 closed Offices are being done so under “optimisation” measures, according to SAPO.

Speaking anecdotally of our own experiences with SAPO in recent years, since the country came out of lockdown and restrictions were lifted, as many as three branches were closed in our area. The main one still in operation at Halfway House, which services much of the Midrand area, is suffering from severe backlogs and a lack of drivers to deliver mail.

As such, for citizens who are reliant on SAPO, not much for mail but essential services too, the fact that more are closing while the allocated budget not being enough to dig the entity out of its current hole, is very concerning indeed.


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