Ghana Post recorded a loss of GH¢6.173 million in 2020, as against a profit of GH¢995,000 the company made the previous year.
The loss was due to escalating operational cost which soared by 16 per cent, as well as general selling and administrative expenses that also increased by 20 per cent in 2020.
This came to light when the Managing Director of the company (MD), Bice Osei Kuffour, and other management staff appeared before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament in Accra yesterday to respond to some infractions flagged by the Auditor-General in its 2021 report on the company.
Also in attendance were the Deputy MD, Kwaku Tabi Amponsah; General Manager, Finance and Accounting Control, Iddrisu Chinchanku; General Manager, Finance Management Accounting, Eric Awuah, and the General Manager of Audit and Compliance, Isaac Marmah.
Mr Kuffour attributed the situation to the emergence of COVID-19 in the country in 2020.
“Our work as postal administrators involves movement of items outside and into the country.
So when the country was hit with the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, borders were shut and items that you could have easily moved with vehicles had to be moved with airlines and this created a lot of operational cost and revenue losses,” he said.
Mr Kuffour, however, said that their operations had since improved significantly, especially with the stability of the Cedi.
“Now, the situation is much, much better because we do not have the challenges we faced in 2020.
“If we do come here again (PAC) for 2021/2022, I am sure your committee will commend management of Ghana Post,” he added.
On the question of unused lands of the company totalling 110 acres scattered across the country, the MD said that the company was taking the necessary steps to get title for the lands.
“In fact, we have already secured title for 48 out of the 110 acres,” adding that the company had entered into an arrangement with a third party to register its lands at Lashibi, Airport and Bubuashie, all in Accra.
He, however, said that their land at Dichemso in Kumasi had been encroached upon, and that the company was in the process of registering and developing the property in partnership with a potential investor.
Scheme of service
The Vice-Chairman of the committee, Samuel Atta Mills, cited the Auditor-General’s report that flagged the absence of a scheme of service within the company.
He wondered why the board of the company had not helped to develop such a scheme to govern employees’ output.
“We further noted that the lack of scheme of service has resulted in a situation where some employees have been on a particular rank for more than 10 years, while others have been promoted more than three times within a period, what is going on? Mr Atta Mills enquired.
In response, the MD agreed that the company did not have such a scheme, but said that the board commissioned a firm in 2019 to help develop a scheme for the company.
“As we speak now the final draft has been submitted to us and before the end of quarter three this year, we should have the scheme of service,” he assured.
Other institutions that also appeared before the committee were the Accra Digital Centre and the Data Protection Commission.