Compliance and enforcement challenges a case of the national building regulations? processes in South Africa

03 Oct 2016

This paper discusses the compliance and enforcement processes of the National Building Regulations of South Africa. These processes are administered by the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS) in terms of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act 103 of 1977 (The Act). The objective was to investigate the how the business processes by the NRCS have enforced Building Control Officers at the Local Authorities nationwide to comply with the safety of buildings for building occupants or end-users. The investigation was largely motivated by the high number of injuries, deaths and/or human lives affected and reported due to collapsing and defective buildings. It was a case study based on disasters occurred and reported at various Local Authorities, in private residential homes, government-owned buildings, abandoned and commercial buildings, such as shopping malls. This study applied the interpretive approach underpinned by qualitative methodology where interviews and questionnaires were used to collect data from affected stakeholders. The stakeholders ranged from building owners, prospective building owners and/or building occupants, built-environment practitioners, Local Authorities? Building Control Officers and the Regulator. In gathering the data, it was ensured that it was done in an ethical manner and for the intended study only. The empirical findings revealed that there was a critical need for business process review and strategy shifts that advance objectivity and benefits to compliance, visibility and awareness of regulatory process. The output is a proposed re-design NRCS business processes that can effectively enforce compliance of the building regulations of South Africa.