Is the Post Office liquid and able to perform its duties as retrenchments loom?

The Post Office is definitely looking at all options, including the private sector, in order to stay afloat. Picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso / Independent Newspapers

The Post Office is definitely looking at all options, including the private sector, in order to stay afloat. Picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso / Independent Newspapers

Published May 3, 2024


The South African Post Office (Sapo) is looking for help from the private sector as it ties to remain afloat and liquid.

During a parliamentary reply, Democratic Alliance (DA) member Natasha Mazzone asked the Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies, Mondli Gungubele about the financial state of the Post Office and if the company was looking for private investment.

Mazzone specifically questioned whether the Post Office intended to collaborate with the private sector to ensure that it continued to deliver services, and if not, what was the Post Office’s next steps.

The minister responded and acknowledged that numerous private parties are interested in investing and have put forward proposals.

These business proposals will undergo a comprehensive review by an internal investment committee.

This process will ensure a thorough evaluation of all potential partnership opportunities, to strategically select collaborations that will best support the Post Office’s turnaround strategy, the minister explained.

Sapo’s liquidity

The Post Office’s liquidity has been placed into the spotlight over the last week as the company was forced to retrench close to 5,000 workers.

Mazzone highlighted that the Post Office required a R4 billion bailout, given its dire financial state.

She emphasised that this bailout was not allocated to Sapo in the 2024-25 budget.

The minister responded by stating that the R3.8 billion additional funding requirement had been integrated into the financial projections in the endorsed business rescue plan, which received approval from the majority of Sapo creditors in December 2023.

He added that the funding is essential for implementing the business rescue plan, including settling creditor dividends and investing in CAPEX to modernise mail operating facilities, branch networks, logistics fleets, and information technology infrastructure.

Sapo is in continuous discussions with National Treasury and the Minister of Finance to explore all solutions to ensure that the organisation is adequately capitalised in alignment with the business rescue plan.


Earlier this week, it was reported that almost 5,000 Post Office employees could be retrenched after the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) and a Single Adjudication Committee ruled that their Temporary Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) relief funding application has been denied.

“This retrenchment impacts 4,889 employees of the bargaining unit staff members,” Joint Business Rescue Practitioner, Anoosh Rooplal said.

Rooplal said they were disappointed with the unsuccessful application, as they had been hopeful that the TERS funding would provide a temporary relief to staff members, as the funding would have effectively been used to up-skill and re-train staff for possible job placements while still earning a salary.