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Chief Surveyor-General’s Office duties in term of Land survey ACT NO. 8 of 1997

  • The Chief Surveyor-General shall be in charge of such CADASTRAL SURVEYING and LAND INFORMATION SERVICES in the Republic as the Minister may direct and, subject to this Act, shall –
     Promote and control all matters connected with those surveys and services;
  • Conduct such cadastral survey related research as may be required;
  • Take charge of and preserve the records of all surveys and operations which do not form part of the records of an office of a Surveyor-General and  which were carried out before the commencement of this Act or under this section;
  •   Prepare, compile and amend such maps and other documents as may be required;
  •   Supervise and control the survey and diagrammatic representation of land for purposes of registration in a deeds registry;
  • Regulate the procedure in each Surveyor-General’s office and determine the manner in which this Act shall be carried out;
  •   Any land surveyor employed in the office of the Chief Surveyor-General may, if authorized thereto by the Chief Surveyor-General, perform any specified act or task which may be performed in terms of this Act or any other law by the Chief Surveyor-General.

Cadastral Surveys in South African Context
The security of title associated with each parcel of land in South Africa has long provided a basis for the private sector to finance physical development. The great advantage of South Africa’s cadastral survey system is that it accurately identifies the position of each parcel of land and the extent of rights over it. The offices of the four Surveyors-General examine and approve all cadastral surveys for the registration of ownership of property and real rights in land.

Cadastral records
There are six Surveyor-General’s offices in South Africa, each of which regulates cadastral surveys in the provinces for which it is responsible.

The offices of the Surveyors-General process survey records, including the examination, approval and safe-keeping of all survey records relating to all diagrams, general plans and draft sectional plans for registration purposes, relating to the provinces under their jurisdiction. In addition, general plans depicting thousands of erven surveyed for the former Department of Development Aid are being upgraded so that they may be registered in deeds registries when required.

The fact that the Surveyor-General’s office holds complete records of all cadastral surveys ensures that there is virtually no possibility of properties overlapping and, once registered, little chance of conflicting claims to ownership.

The Surveyor-General’s offices enable the above processes by performing the following functions:

  1. Administration of the Land Survey Act (Act 8 of 1997)
  2. Administration of the Sectional Titles Act (Act 95 of 1986)

Service Delivery

  • Examination of Diagrams and General Plans with a turn around time not exceeding 15 working days.
  • Examination of Sectional Title Plans with a turn around time not exceeding 15 working days.
  • Approval of Diagrams, General Plans & Sectional Plans which comply with all relevant statutory requirements so that such documents can be registered in a Deeds Office.
  • Do Cadastral Data Processing to check the consistency of the numeric data on newly submitted documents and to capture alphanumeric information from approved documents into the database of the Cadastral Information System.
  • Scan into electronic format all approved documents so as to protect the only legal copies from damage and manual use, and to provide an efficient on-line service to the Deeds Office and a quick and efficient service to our clients at the public counter.
  • Maintain a spatial database of Surveyed Real Rights that provides a powerful tool for Macro Planning environments.
  • Provide a cadastral mapping service when there is need for cadastral maps or when the historical cadastre has to be recreated, for e.g. restitution claims, mineral rights, etc.
  • Provide a service to local authorities and the Department of Justice, in checking the descriptions of changes to magisterial districts or local authority boundaries prior to publication in a Government or Provincial Gazette.
  • Achieve and maintain all original diagrams, general plans, sectional plans, survey records and beacon agreements.
  • Maintain a current and dynamic cadastre by updating the various documents in respect of registration in a Deeds Office and other changes such as street closures, street name changes, cancellations or withdrawal of documents.
  • Maintain a set of boundaries of local authorities, magisterial districts and other cadastrally related proclaimed areas.
  • Provide access to existing spatial data that can be used to improve public service delivery, by eliminating costly duplication in the capture and maintenance of spatial data.

Service Excellence

  • Provide Service Excellence in the provision of cadastral information (paper and digital) and other spatially related data to Government and provincial Departments, Land Surveyors, Attorneys, Conveyancers and the General Public.

Assistance to Other Institutions

  • Land Claims Commissioners
  • Local Government Institutions
  • Survey of Stateland
  • State Surveys
  • Statistics South Africa
  • Provincial Offices of DLA
  • Registrars of Deeds
  • The Independent Electoral Commission
  • Demarcation Boards