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Ken Borland

Majola suspended by CSA board

Posted on March 19, 2012 by Ken

The board of Cricket South Africa (CSA) on Saturday suspended chief executive Gerald Majola pending an independent disciplinary inquiry and agreed to follow the recommendations of the Nicholson Inquiry into the bonus scandal that has engulfed the administration of the game in the republic.

The Nicholson Inquiry, appointed by sports minister Fikile Mbalula, found that Majola had “surreptitiously” received R1.8 million in unauthorised bonuses, as well as irregular travel expenses, in contravention of the Companies Act.

Majola had initially been cleared of any serious wrongdoing by a CSA inquiry headed by acting president AK Khan, who has since resigned.

“The board of directors of CSA considered the recommendations of the Nicholson Committee of Inquiry and, after lengthy deliberations, have resolved to rescind all the findings of the Khan commission and to suspend Majola with immediate effect pending a disciplinary inquiry,” board member Oupa Nkagisang told a news conference in Johannesburg on Saturday.

The CSA board also elected a new acting president to replace Khan in experienced administrator and transformation committee chairman Willie Basson, while Jacques Faul of the North-West province has been appointed acting CEO.

Judge Chris Nicholson had announced on March 9 that Majola should face an independent disciplinary inquiry as well as possible criminal charges. Former ICC president Ray Mali, who chaired Saturday’s CSA meeting, confirmed that outside experts would handle Majola’s disciplinary process.

“We will have to get eminent people, reputable people, so that there are no comebacks. The board will meet on March 30 to decide who will head the disciplinary inquiry, but it has to be an independent person,” Mali said.

Mali said the board had considered dissolving itself.

“The entire issue of dissolving the board did come up, but that can only be decided by the affiliates and provinces. The board also discussed the New Zealand and Australian models of corporate governance and the Lord Woolf document that is at the ICC, but we have to engage the affiliates and outside stakeholders about that. It’s not just a CSA matter.”

The CSA board stopped short of issuing an apology for their backing of Majola, despite Mbalula making a suggestion on Friday that they should all stand down because they have lost the respect of the South African public.

When asked if the CSA board were apologetic, Mali said: “If the spirit of cricket is not there, then it is not palatable, and it has not been there for the last two years. Cricket needs gentlemen and ladies, people who are above board, but things have not gone well.

“The steps we took were based on the recommendations of people we believe were properly qualified – accountants and lawyers,” Mali said.

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