This office has written to the Cape Law Society and its Property Law Committee on this matter and they have indicated that they understand our reasons and support the request, provided that Regulation 35(2) is still applicable.*
The demographics of the Cape Town Deeds Registry has changed over the past years such that there is an increasingly number of examiners and Data staff that are not conversant in Afrikaans and who have not been exposed to any schooling in Afrikaans. We have been advised that our recruitment practice, cannot be restrictive in making Afrikaans a compulsory requirement.
Given the current economic status and the unemployment rate, graduates take on whatever position that offers them employment, wherever it is available. We receive almost no applications for employment in Examination from graduates residing in the Western Cape.
The number of examiners especially who are conversant in the examination of deeds drafted in Afrikaans is reduced annually due to natural attrition. The quality of examination is being affected adversely and may lead to serious errors in examination or the time to examine deeds being extended which would result in greater turnaround times.
An appeal is therefore made to you to please draft deeds and documents in English being the common language of communication in government, in the spirit of co-operation and tolerance.
Please communicate this appeal to your correspondents also.
*Regulation 35(2) of the Deeds Registries Act:
“Conditions must therefore be inserted in deeds in the official language in which they were constituted, provided that where any conditions are embodied in a registered deed in another official language, such language may be perpetuated in subsequent deeds.”