Couple face jail after gutters, downpipes fail to comply at Zwartkop estate
Dr Itumeleng Mogolane and his wife Dorothy Ramushu have 14 days in which to get their pipes and gutters in order or face jail time for contempt of court.
The Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, had in October last year ordered the couple to adhere to the estate’s rules and change their gutters and pipes to what was required.
The Zwartkops Homeowners' Association now returned to court to complain that nothing was done. Judge Neil Tuchten ordered that if the couple did not get their house in order, the association could return to court to demand the jail time.
Irene du Plessis, who was the estate manager last year when they first approached the court in that application, said they had sent numerous letters since 2016 to Mogolane to ensure that his gutters and downpipes were in accordance with the estate rules.
The association also asked him to repair and paint watermarks on the outside of his home, which she said were not pleasing to the eye for people who passed the house. There were also complaints about his garden which apparently did not conform with the rules, but the biggest issue was the gutters and downpipes.
The estate has a long list of specifics to which homeowners must comply for mainly aesthetic reasons. But the gutters and downpipes had to be according to the specifications as the estate was located in a dolomite danger zone.
Du Plessis stated it was a requirement for the dolomite management programme, within which the estate falls, that all the gutters and rainwater downpipes be connected to an effectively designed stormwater management system.
The owner’s architect must consult the dolomite management programme manual for the minimum pipe diameter material for the effective design of a site-specific stormwater management system.
All rainwater must be managed by gutters and downpipes must channel rainwater and swimming pool waste water into an underground pipe system. According to the rules stormwater may under no circumstances be channelled into the sewerage system.
The rules also specify exactly which gutters and downpipes must be used. It is also required that concrete pavers must be installed around the house and at a slight angle, so that the water can run from the dwelling.
Du Plessis last year told the court the home owner simply ignored these specifications and the letters sent in this regard. She said the association had no choice but to turn to court.
The court at the time ordered the couple to adhere to the estate’s rules, and to bring the gutters and rainwater pipes in line with them.
They were also told to comply with the gardening rules, which included that only indigenous vegetation may be used for landscaping.
In the latest papers Robert Wesseloo, who is now the estate manager, said that although last year's court order was served on the owners, nothing was changed and they simply ignored the order.
He said the fact that the owners did not comply with the dolomite safety standards were unfair to the other residents in the estate, who could face potential danger.
The couple did not state their side in court papers.