Last week, 273 title deeds were given to community members from Homevale at the Homelite Community Hall.
The hall was packed as people eagerly awaited their title deeds, of which many home owners have waited years for. Chairperson of Human Settlements, Mr Roney Morwe expressed, “Today we are giving home owners from Ward 3 title deeds, as a committee we have agreed that every Friday we will be awarding title deeds to people. Some people have waited as long as 15 years for them as most of these houses were built in the apartheid era”. A community member who has waited for over 10 years said, “I am disappointed that I have not received my title deeds today, I have witnessed people receiving title deeds before me even though I have been waiting longer. I am inquisitive to know what criteria is used when people are awarded title deeds”.
The Minister of Human Settlements has issued a law that title deeds will only be given to people after 8 years of the homes being inhabited by the owners. This comes as a result of home owners selling their houses and still being left with no place to stay. A home owner will not be able to sell their property without a title deed. Councillor of ward 3, Clifford Lewis said, “I am extremely happy with the awarding of title deeds to my people, it is sad that some people have died whilst waiting for them but at least their children will get them. There are still many more title deeds that will be given”.
An elated home owner, Mariam Grace Kock stated, “I am finally at peace, I am glad that I have got my title deed as I have been eagerly waiting since 1990. I hope others will follow suite in receiving theirs”. In the event that a home owner passes on without receiving their title deeds they can approach the High Court to get executorship of the deceased estate. Morwe explained that, “In instances whereby one has passed, on they can approach the Sol Plaatje Municipality with regards to title deeds so that we can see what can be done regarding the matter. The Sol Plaatje Municipality has a desk that is dedicated to assisting people in attaining their title deeds”.
Lewis has personally pledged to assist the disabled in getting their title deeds by going to their homes and giving it to the personally, “I will take title deeds to those that are disabled and who cannot fetch them themselves”. Title deeds are extremely important and it is imperative that they are kept safe as there have been cases of people stealing title deeds and changing home owners names on them. Those that are yet to receive their title deeds can enquire about them at Sol Plaatje Municipality.