GPOC and other institutions should get together to solve proof of address problem

Dear Editor,

The general operations of the Guyana Post Office Corporation (GPOC) need a good tweaking to get up to speed with modern times and to remain relevant.

I set aside some of my valuable time to go to the GPOC, under the illusion that I was going to do a straightforward transaction; but I was wrong.

What should have been a simple trip to the GPOC to ship a package to Germany became a fatiguing, frustrating, annoying experience that made me regret having to conduct business with our national post office.

I am forced to ask a question: Is the GPOC working against itself to seal its own coffin?

I was sent away twice. On one occasion, I was told that my driver’s licence was not an acceptable form of identification, so I had to leave to get my national identification card. The ridiculous and most annoying part of the experience came when the clerk informed me that they would not accept a photocopy of a proof of address. I had to return to my office to get a computer print-off of a bill from the Guyana Power and Light to produce as my proof of address.

The GPOC clerk however rejected my electricity bill, stating that it had been printed directly from the internet and they need to see the post office stamp on it. By that time, I had started to become mentally and physically fatigued.

I went through great pains to explain the stupidity of this exercise to the young clerk and two customs officers, who appeared sympathetic, but could do nothing to help. I don’t blame the post office clerk. He is only following the rules established by the Postmaster General.

Kaieteur News columnist Freddie Kissoon recently wrote an article for that newspaper, rightfully lambasting one of the popular banks in Georgetown for imposing ridiculous rules about proof of address.

Anyone can put their name with any address on an envelope, mail it and present the envelope as proof of their place of residence.

Unfortunately, I have neither the bravado nor temperament of Freddie Kissoon but I concur with his concerns at that bank and the backward rules various agencies apply for proof of address.

I am extremely annoyed by the experience I had at GPOC. I was sent away three times and I was not given proper guidance as to what the post office requires. Furthermore, these requirements are redundant, ridiculous and annoying.

It appears to me that the GPOC is stuck in a sordid orgy of backwardness. A bit of tweaking will help them to realize that there is an international campaign to stop using paper because to get paper, we must destroy our trees which affects our LCDS and creates pollution and destruction in the environment and eco-sphere.

Therefore, banks, electricity companies, water companies, investment companies etc are encouraging customers to go paperless. My family and I, as well as RK’s Guyana Security Services and its subsidiaries accede to this as the way forward for our environment. Hence, we access and pay bills and do our banking via the internet.

I wish the Postmaster General and his board would put their heads together and jog their grey matter to find a way to solve this issue and drag the dinosaur that GPOC has become into modern times.

I wish to advise the eminent board of the GPOC and the Postmaster General that they should communicate with various institutions, like banks, Guyana Power and Light, Guyana Telephone & Telegraph Company, Guyana Water Inc. etc. and solve this proof of address problem together, once and for all.

I was shocked to hear that GPOC will not accept GWI bills as proof of address, a bill from a public utility company that supplies a vital commodity for life. This is totally unacceptable.

Citizens of Guyana, let us raise our voices to high heavens and fight with all our strength to get GPOC and other agencies and institutions to cease institutionalizing unreasonable requirements that do nothing but harass people and waste their time.

Yours faithfully,

Roshan Khan Snr.

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