Don’t discount the postal service just as yet –solons

Published September 29, 2020, 7:38 PM

by Ben Rosario

Taken for granted and nearly given up as obsolete by many due to the advancement in technology, postal service may yet make a great comeback as a vital communications tool in the 2022 presidential and local elections.

Defending the 2021 budget of the Philippine Postal Corporation during the plenary debates on the proposed 2021 General Appropriations Act, Muntinlupa City Rep. Ruffy Biazon said Philpost officials are very supportive of the bill proposing mail balloting among senior citizens and perhaps, persons with disabilities, in 2022.

Senior Deputy Minority Leader and Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate raised concerns of security and the readiness of Philpost for mail voting among seniors which is contained in a bill authored by Marikina City Rep. Stella Luz Quimbo.

“In the event this is adopted and becomes a law, is the Philippine Postal Corporation ready for this kind of service?” Zarate asked.

Biazon said Philpost is ready but will be requiring additional budget to do additional work.

“They are prepared to embark on it if they are given the mandate to handle vote by mail although this is just limited to seniors,” he said.

Biazon admitted that postal services have been relegated to the background as far as communications and information technology are concerned but it remains vital especially in business and government operations.

Philpost is seeking the reimbursement by government of less than P8.9 million for the franking privileges granted various offices, particularly the judiciary and legislative branches.

The judiciary alone has made use of the services by sending over 5.89 million mails in 2019.

“The judiciary is the lead user of mail services,” said Biazon.

“Relevant pa ba ang ang Philippine postal office?  Meron pa rin relevance dahil meron pa silang ibang serbisyong inihahatid katulad ng pagdadala ng parcels (Is the Philippine postal office still relevant. It is, because they still have delivery service like conveying parcels) ,” explained Biazon, vice chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations.

However, the Philpost budget sponsor admitted that in the past five years, the state-run postal firm has been battling attrition resulting from the fast development of communications and information technology.

Despite this, the corporation still plays a vital role in ensuring that the wheels of justice continue to run in the country, he said.