In normal cases, Empost has the capacity to deliver 6,000 to 7,000 cards per day, but due to communication problems, it now only delivers 170 cards. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: Empost said they could not deliver 14,118 national ID cards because of problems in reaching the card owners.

Some of the pending cards date back to the period of October 2010-January 27, 2011, a top Empost executive told Gulf News on Thursday.

Of this number, 11,114 cards could not be delivered due to non-response from customers, Sultan Al Midfa , CEO of Empost, said.

Empost was assigned to deliver the national ID cards in 2007.

As Gulf News earlier reported, Empost stopped accepting new ID cards from the Emirates Identity Authority (Emirates ID) since January 27 to enable them to clear the backlog of cards.

No reply

Al Midfa said some of the customers who did not respond to Empost were found to have left the country or have passed away.

"Some of their mobile phones were constantly busy or switched off and some others requested to keep the card with us as they would collect it from our counters," he explained.

About 3,000 cards could not be delivered due to wrong address or contact numbers given by the ID card applicants, the CEO said.

"In all our hubs, approximately 3,000 cards are of such "dead cases", where we are unable to establish contact with the customer due to different reasons — wrong number, incomplete number, non-working number, etc," he explained.

Although Empost has the capacity to deliver 6,000 to 7,000 cards per day in normal cases, it was delivering just 170 pending cards per day last week due to the abovementioned problems, Al Midfa disclosed. "This is incomparable to our real capacity," he said.

Because of such problems, it is difficult to say how many days it will take to clear the backlog, the CEO said.

"The cards with wrong numbers and customers not being available pose huge problems," he said.

Generally, Empost delivers the articles within three days, he said.

"After receiving the article at a branch it takes another 24 hours to establish contact with a customer and accordingly delivery is arranged. For example, if we receive the cards on Sunday afternoon, the customer is contacted on Monday and delivery is actioned on Tuesday," Al Midfa explained.

New batch

Asked when Empost will resume collection of the new batch of ID cards from Eida, he commented: "We are in continuous contact with Emirates ID and taking new batches of cards is only a matter of time."

As Gulf News reported, Emirates ID engaged Aramex, a courier company, and Emirates Post, the organisation providing postal services in the country to deliver the ID cards due to the increasing number of ID cards.

In numbers:

  • 14,188 ID cards still pending for delivery
  • 170 pending cards delivered per day