The Almighty Sierra Leone Telecommunication Company (SIERRATEL) and The Sierra Leone Postal Services Limited (SALPOST) used to be the pride of Sierra Leone in service delivery but have crumbled down the drain to their unexpected lowest standards that really need some interventions.
Sierratel was formed as a government entity to provide affordable telephone services to the nation. It has in no doubt been the only gate way for all sorts of communication in Sierra Leone – meaning all companies do pay for this gate way. In the past years, Sierratel was a business giant in Sierra Leone from the late 1980s to early 1990s making meaningful economic contribution to the government. The first action that started crippling it was the establishment of an open line to homes and commercial premises which led to massive corruption among workers. Those connected were misusing the international line, no proper accountability from senior workers and payment of staff salaries became problematic. So, the ill managed company gradually turned out to be the centre of staff strikes and corruption. This continued till the wake of mobile companies in Sierra Leone in the late 1990s to 2000. Covered by the gate way mobile lenders from Sierratel, the mobile companies toppled Sierratel and became more powerful to this moment. The imperative question one may ask is - what has really killed the Almighty Sierratel, is it the mobile companies’ revolution or lack of innovation?( the giver to become the great loser).
After allowing customers or subscribers to the mobile companies to be loyal and develop trust in them, it became difficult for Sierraratel to wake up from its long slumber and catch up with the 100 meters ahead mobile companies. To leap-frog now, build confidence in the millions of mobile subscribers in Sierra Leone has been a herculean task for the one time pride of Sierra Leone telecompany.
One may suggest among other things as a way forward that added to the cheapest rates, Sierratel which operates both land and mobile telephone services must design strategies like the sim and credits paid for but the mobile phone itself free. Also seasonal raffle draws and other sales promotions should be done.
The Sierra Leone Postal Services Company (SALPOST) on the other hand was formed to ensure effective and efficient delivery of mails, other parcels, information packages (normal and classified) both internal and external. It had a good structure and did well in the 70s and 80s but started declining in the wake of the new media technology known as Internet. This was because the internet provides website, email, facebook (social media) facilities that could easily replace the services SALPOST could provide.
With innovation however, SALPOST could have still survived and maintained its expected service delivery especially the hinterland document services in the country. There are certain documents that still need the services of SALPOST both local and International that go beyond international facilities. With facilities and well coordinated programs, SALPOST can still make its contribution to nation building. Why have DHL, Red Coat and others are still surviving and making inroads to the happiness of the public, staff and most important their owners/Managing Directors? All this is because of well coordinated programs and dedication. The idea is centred on sober arrangement with the Airlines for prompt delivery of international mails to their respective destinations. For local mails around the country, SALPOST should have small and good vehicles with dedicated staff who will not give flimsy excuses to deliver parcels on time. The above are just few examples of numerous services SALPOST should offer this nation.
Nevertheless, since SALPOST has lost direction of what to do to keep the Institution above the water, it is imperative that government inject and render it some innovations to salvage the deplorable and ridiculous condition of SALPOST.
The first move government can do towards this is to like the US A transfer the issuance of all passports to SALPOST whiles the Immigration concentrate on the real enforcement of immigrants and other duties. If passports issuance is done by SALPOST, that will wake up and make it fulfil all other functions. Added to the revenue SALPOST will generate for government, it will also become more viable and be a pillar of the Agenda for Prosperity. Immigration on the other hand will then be steadfast in checking for residential permits, expert rate fee, work permits and other documents around our bothers, in the cities and other big towns. The effectiveness and efficiency of this enforcement body (Immigration) can then be achieved and appreciated, hence a contribution to the Agenda for Prosperity. What out for more in the next edition in trying to salvage the situation of SALPOST.
2016 Global Peace Conference to be held in Freetown---as IPRA 50th Birthday confab ends in Istanbul
The 26th biennal conference of the Internatonal Peace Research Association (IPRA) is billed to take place in Freetown, Sierra Leone in November 2016, marking the second time Africa has hosted the conference since the founding of IPRA in 1964. This was announced following the re-election of the two IPRA Secretaries-general, Dr Ibrahim Seaga Shaw (pictured) and Dr Nesrin Kenar, who co-ordinated the 25th IPRA conference in Turkey, at the organisation’s administrative meeting on August 14 during the 25th IPRA conference in Istanbul to serve a second term of two years.
Freetown, Dec. 15 (SLENA) -The Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources, Alhaji Mr. Minkailu Mansaray last week briefed members of the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on Mines and Mineral Resources on the general status and the operations of the mining sector in the country especially that of the African Minerals Limited and the London Mining Company.
Speaking to the committee at the new administrative building in parliament, the minister informed the committee that before the outbreak of the Ebola epidemic, the mining sector was at its peak and most of the companies constructed schools, bridges, offered scholarships to children in the community as part of their corporate social responsibility.
“They also contributed immensely to the country’s Growth Domestic Product (GDP),’ the minister added.
Following the death of JPK Lamin, the executive secretary of the independent media commission, of Ebola last weekend, concerned citizens are asking whether it is not appropriate to quarantine workers there for the next 21 days?
JPK Lamin who got the disease from his wife who had earlier died of it has been buried by the Ebola burial team over the weekend.
Colleagues at the IMC say JPK Lamin was a dedicated worker, and the same testimony has been made by his former colleagues who knew him while he was secretary to the Cabinet of former President Kabba.
Past Wednesday, I was standing with my friend by the Commercial Bank along Siaka Stevens Street discussing about the current shocking ebola figures for Western Area when my friend showed me a piece in John Benjamin’s Metro Newspaper titled “London Paopa Brigade in turmoil”. It was one of the usual pieces by John Benjamin’s newspaper to create mischief and spread lies to blackmail Julius Maada Bio. And my friend knows me now that I don’t tolerate mischief makers especially those few henchmen at Metro Newspaper who through lazy journalism sit in their offices and make up fanciful stories for entertainment.
Koinadugu, Dec. 15 (SLENA) – Over the weekend, Member of Parliament representing constituency 044 in the Koinadugu District, Hon. Alusine Marrah together with stakeholders in the constituency engaged constituents living along the villages bordering the Guinea/Sierra Leone border on the challenges in the fight against the ebola virus.
Speaking to constituents at Mansadu, Mongo Chiefdom, the member of parliament advised that border crossing be tightened between the two countries while mounting checkpoints at strategic crossing points.
He presented various items such as thermometers, hand sanitizers, rice and cash to members of the community.
CARL Welcomes Latest Acc Indictments; Urges More Action Against Corruption
Friday 19th December 2014: The Center for Accountability and Rule of Law (CARL) commends the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) for its efforts at combating corruption in Sierra Leone. In particular, CARL welcomes the recent indictments by the Commission of some public officials for various acts of corruption.
On December 12, the Commission announced the indictment of seven persons, including public officials and employees of non-government organisations (NGOs) for various offences ranging from improperly conferring an advantage, obtaining an advantage to conspiracy to commit a corruption offences, and misappropriation of donor property (meant for Ebola quarantined homes in Kenema).
Sierra Leone’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom has warned politicians engaging in politics instead of concentrating on Ebola.
In a press release issued from his London office this afternoon, His Excellency Edward Mohamed Turay, who is also a senior member of the National Advisory Council (NAC) of the ruling All People’s Congress (APC), said this is not a time for politics and called on all Sierra Leoneans to rally around President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma in the fight against Ebola.