By Sanette Viljoen
It is important that sectional-title schemes, being small communities on their own, also comply with the disaster management regulations to curb the spread of the Covid-19 virus.
The biggest question by sectional-title owners during these times was how to comply with sectional-title legislation regarding meetings scheduled to be held during the lockdown.
The Community Schemes Ombud Service (CSOS) issued a directive in this regard on 27 March 2020. This directive can be summarised as follows:
Because all meetings of 100 or more people are prohibited, trustees and owners may still have meetings, but these meetings must not only comply with the Sectional Title Management Act, but also with the regulations to the Disaster Management Act.
For this reason trustee meetings should as far as possible be held via internet, for instance by means of Skype or Zoom. If it is personal, the necessary precautions should be taken regarding distancing, masks and disinfection. The only limitation is the manner and place of the meetings, but for the rest of the meeting everything should comply with the Sectional Titles Act and the meeting must still comply with the period of notification, the manner of notification of meetings, and agendas.
The directive also confirms that employees of the scheme, such as security guards, have to be provided with protective equipment and that communal areas that are regularly used by the owners should also be provided with the necessary equipment and that disinfectants should also be provided. If it is impossible to provide these areas with the necessary equipment and to disinfect these areas, they should be locked. Biometric systems for gaining access to the building should also be cleaned regularly to prevent the spread of the virus.
As South Africans we should comply with the national disaster regulations, and if a meeting has to be held in a sectional-titles scheme, we must make sure that we comply with the regulations but still obey the current sectional-title laws.