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Ken Borland

Majola faces civil & criminal investigations

Posted on April 27, 2012 by Ken

The noose tightened on suspended Cricket South Africa (CSA) chief executive officer Gerald Majola on Thursday as sports minister Fikile Mbalula announced he was facing both a criminal investigation as well as a civil claim for the repayment of illegal bonuses paid to him by the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Mbalula met with CSA in Johannesburg on Thursday to discuss the further implementation of the recommendations of the Nicholson Committee of Enquiry, which he appointed in October, into allegations of irregular bonus payments and poor corporate governance against Majola.

Judge Chris Nicholson announced on March 13 that Majola had “surreptitiously” received 1.8 million rand (174,000 euro) in unauthorised bonuses from the IPL, as well as irregular travel expenses, in contravention of the Companies Act.
Nicholson recommended that Majola be suspended, the bonus money be recovered and that CSA undergo restructuring of their board and governance processes.

Majola was suspended by the CSA board on March 17, with Jacques Faul appointed as the acting CEO and Willie Basson as acting president.

“We’re satisfied that CSA are implementing the Nicholson recommendations,” Mbalula told a news conference on Thursday. “But the recovery of bonuses was also a very clear recommendation and a civil process will be launched by CSA and included in the disciplinary commission against Majola.

“The Hawks [South Africa’s Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation] have also been to CSA and are in the process of their investigation. They’re on top of it, but we don’t know the outcome yet. We have to respect the process because it’s not up to us to arrest people. It was a smooth operation, not done Hollywood style, because that way things get done properly,” Mbalula said.

Mbalula said that for the sake of “stability”, the CSA board of directors would remain in place until the next annual meeting in September.

“It’s just a few months to go for this board and then they can get a fresh mandate. We wanted to address the issues and bring stability to cricket. If we had asked the board to resign, then certain things would not have been done; they’ve put the process in motion,” Mbalula said.

CSA had also agreed to launch a special fund for transformation on May 8, while the steering committee in charge of restructuring their board would now include representatives from the department of sport and the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc).

The chairman of the disciplinary enquiry into Majola has been appointed by the Bar Council and will be John Myburgh SC, while CSA will now approach the Bar to appoint the prosecutor. Mbalula said the deadline for “the completion of the disciplinary procedure is May 31″.

“The board accepts they could have played a better role at the time they were called to do so, but there has been no resistance in going through this process and we are satisfied that we have done our duty,” the sport minister said.

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