ConsumerTalk with Wendy Knowler

'It's time for SA Post Office to declare its incapacity' - complaints stream in

Consumer journalist Wendy Knowler has received a barrage of complaints from South Africans who have been waiting months for the SA Post Office to deliver their packages.

Many locals have complained about overseas parcels that have not arrived or waiting periods as long as 5 months.

In particular, there have been many complaints from those who have subscribed to international publications.

One man suggests that it is time for the Post Office to declare that it is no longer operational and incapable of fulfilling and services.

Knowler explains that the Post Office has a major backlog at its international sorting centre in Joburg.

The Post Office says it has made efforts to try to alleviate the backlog by redistributing international mail to other regional sorting centres.

The Post Office sent the following response to the various complaints:

“There is a substantial backlog at the international sorting centre, which was made worse by the strike during July. This was caused by huge volumes – we are getting up to four times more items from other countries than we did a year ago – as well as inadequate equipment.

We have now moved all international items that do not need to be assessed for contents or import tax to other sorting centres where the volumes are not so high, such as Witspos, Tshwane Mail and CapeMail.

To some extent, naturally, the backlog has now been shifted from the international mail centre to other sorting centres, but these mail centres are making good progress with the accumulated mail. We are therefore confident that our customers will soon see an improvement in the delivery of items from other countries."

They arrive in South Africa, and then they get held up in Johannesburg at the sorting centre.

Wendy Knowler, consumer journalist

When you're talking about subscriptions or any many other parcels, the courier way would be the way to go. It's more reliable, but the cost is totally prohibitive.

Wendy Knowler, consumer journalist

I would be very loath to invest in an expensive subscription to an overseas publication at this point.

Wendy Knowler, consumer journalist

A string of calls, WhatsApps and messages came in about the consequences of the delays at the Post Office.

Listen to the entire ConsumerTalk discussion during The Pippa Hudson Show:

Every Wednesday, on The Pippa Hudson Show, Wendy Knowler provides useful insights and tips on how to make the most of your buying power.

For more stories visit the ConsumerTalk feature page.

Got a consumer case you need help resolving?

Email: consumer@knowler.co.za, put Cape Talk in the subject line, followed by the issue e.g. cellphone contract dispute.


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