In Land Registration in South Africa (De Rebus [May edition]), Allen West looks at the proposed revision of the Deeds Registries Act and other relevant legislation. He begins by noting that review of the land registration regulatory framework is being driven by the need to meet the expected increase in volumes of land parcels to be registered - an increase from the current 6,4 million to 20 million.
Despite these volumes, the Department of Land Affairs will still maintain a land registration regulatory framework that will be efficient, reliable, transparent and affordable. This will be achieved by inter alia:
- removing barriers to processing increasing numbers of registrations;
- realignment of the cadastre, surveying practice and other related technical/professional functions;
- decentralisation of services to effect delivery at the point of need and adoption of the public sector prescribed batho pele principles in service delivery, including demystifying land registration processes;
- consolidating disparate legislation and avoiding legislative overlap by ensuring the autonomy of the Department of Land Affairs in respect of land registration procedures;
- recognition and accommodation of new forms of land tenure; and
- employing technology to increase efficiency and ultimately to reduce costs.
To create a more expeditious registration process, a number of options will be looked at. These options include the following:
removing information from applications not strictly necessary for purposes of the land register;
- allowing deeds to be filed with the relevant Deeds Offices from anywhere in the country;
The article concludes with the point that the Surveyor-General, Registrar of Deeds and conveyancers are the joint custodians of the land registration system and the input of all is necessary to ensure the continued integrity of the land registration system.