OFFICE OF THE DIRECTOR GENERAL – Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development
Private Bag X833, Pretoria, 0001; 184 Jeff Masemola Street, Pretoria, 0001
Tel: 012 – 312 8911; E-mail: queries@drdlr.gov.za; Website: www.drdlr.gov.za

DEPARTMENTAL CIRCULAR NO: 06 of 2020DATE: 8th May 2020

1. The purpose of this Circular is to outline the processes for the implementation

of the COVID-19 Risk-Adjusted Approach Regulations as announced by President Ramaphosa on 23 April 2020.

2. Following the presidential announcement of the Risk-Adjusted Approach of COVID-19 which introduced Alert Level 4, Agriculture and Deeds were listed as one of the essential services which must resume work to provide their services. Alert Level 4 of the revised Regulations state that the Minister may designate some functions.  It is for this reason that some officials performing these functions within the Department are required to resume work effective 13 May 2020 in order to render their services.

3. The Department has developed a Comprehensive Plan on the Gradual Return to Work which outlines all the activities to be carried out in preparation of employees returning to work. The Plan focuses on the following points:

3.1 Decontamination of all buildings;

3.2 Health Screening at all entrance and exit points of the Departments’ buildings;

3.3 Provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs);

3.4 Provision of relevant tools of trade for employees working remotely;

3.5 Office sitting/seating arrangements;

3.6 Gradual opening of schools

3.7 Domestic travel of officials;

3.8 Psychological counselling and support;

3.9 Communication strategy and plan; and

3.10 Training and awareness of the COVID-19 pandemic.

4. Only one-third (1/3 ) of the Departmental establishment may return to work as indicated by the President. It is estimated that a maximum of 2 763 employees are expected to report to the office on a full-time basis as per the  one-third (1/3) regulation. The majority of employees will continue to work remotely until the current regulations are reviewed and amended.

5. The tables below outline the lists of Offices that will gradually return to work on13 May 2020 and numbers as per Alert Level 4 of the COVID-19 Lockdown:

National Office:
Branch NameOfficeRemoteStandby
Chief Registrar of Deeds0108108
Economic Development, Trade and Marketing187064
Corporate Services Support45177100
Rural Development04234
Financial Management Services13029110
Office of Director General2610027
Agricultural Production, Health, Food Safety and Disaster521397364
National Geomatics Management Services125364
Land Redistribution &Tenure Reform254939
Food Security and Agrarian Reform207139
Provincial Operations6140
Provincial Shared Services Centre:
Name of ProvinceOfficeRemoteStandby
Eastern Cape3463100
Free State754455
KwaZulu Natal52110135
North West15263210
Northern Cape10924
Western Cape294979
NGMS Provincial Offices:
Branch NGMSOfficeRemoteStandby
Western Cape31837
Eastern Cape17425
KwaZulu Natal261441
Northern Cape15426
Free State17228
North West41526
Provincial Deeds Offices:
Branch DeedsOfficeRemoteStandby
Cape Town181166
King William’s Town15132
Offices of the Regional Land Claims Commissioner:
Branch RestitutionOfficeRemoteStandby
KwaZulu Natal70390
Eastern Cape43190
Western Cape40240
Northern Cape20120
North West40270
Free State20140

6. In order to prepare for the return of officials in the various offices, the Branch Heads and Provincial Heads are required to do the following:

6.1 Inform all officials from their respective Branches and Provinces who can work from home and those that must report at the office on a full-time basis (as per the tables above).

6.2 Provide the resources required such as laptops, cellphones, 3G and data to create an enabling environment for those officials who are required to work remotely.

6.3 Confirm with Facilities Management that the decontamination and disinfection of buildings were finalised prior to employees reporting for duty on 13 May 2020.

6.4 Ensure that all staff members observe social distancing at ALL times.

6.5 Ensure that all officials situated in open plan offices seat at least 1.5 metres apart from each other.

6.6 Ensure that the seating arrangement of 1.5 metres is observed in all offices and visitor areas including reception and holding rooms.

7. The Department has also categorized the following employees as vulnerable groups who should work remotely from home:

7.1 All employees who are 60 years and older.

7.2 All officials who have underlying health conditions. It remains the responsibility of the employees to submit proof of their condition to the employer through the designated Compliance Officers. The contact email address is COVID19@dalrrd.gov.za.

8. Decontamination/Disinfection of buildings

8.1 The Department  of  Agriculture,   Land  Reform  and  Rural  Development (DALRRD) has a responsibility to ensure the safety of its officials and clients.

8.2 To ensure the safety of all officials and clients, the Department has taken a decision to decontaminate/disinfect all buildings across the country. Evidence shows that when a person infected with the COVID-19 virus coughs, touches surfaces or objects, that that environment becomes contaminated and other people can become infected if they touch the same surfaces or objects.  The COVID-19 virus can survive for hours and days on surfaces such as steel, wood, plastic, ceramics, glass, etc.

8.3 The Department is currently in the process of decontaminating all departmental buildings – this process will be finalised before officials return to the office.

8.4 Stock levels of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) such as sanitizers, gloves and masks) are being replenished and will continuously be monitored to ensure continuous provision of PPEs to officials.

9. This Circular has taken into consideration the DPSA Circular No. 18 of 2020 on the “State of Disaster COVID-19: Public Service Return to Work Guidelines after the easing of the National Lockdown”

10.  All enquiries related to this Circular may be directed to Ms Kgomotso Kgang, Mr Sipho Ngomane or  Mr Bheki Gutshwa.

Mr PM Shabane

DATE: 8th May 2020


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