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Ken Borland



CSA AGM postponed but interim board not there for a holiday, Mthethwa warns 0

Posted on November 02, 2020 by Ken

Sports Minister Nathi Mthethwa has already accepted that there is no way Cricket South Africa will be able to hold their AGM on December 5, but that does not mean the new interim board of directors he announced on Friday are there for a holiday.

Mthethwa tasked the interim board with completing their mandate within three months, although he did leave the door open for their term of office to be extended.

“The interim board need to hit the ground running and deal with the current governance and structural issues. They should aim to implement the Nicholson Commission recommendations, consider the Fundudzi Forensic Report and take the recommended action or whatever action they deem to be appropriate, review all board decisions made since 2019 and restore the integrity and reputation of CSA.

“They have three months to do this, but that may be extended based on their progress. We hope they will deliver because this group knows exactly what it has to do and the Members Council still has an obligation to ensure their work is moving well. But there is no way December 5 can remain as the date for their AGM, which could have been avoided if certain people had listened earlier,” Mthethwa said on Friday.

The new interim board of directors is chaired by Judge Zak Yacoob, a former justice of the Constitutional Court, and includes other ‘independent’ figures in Caroline Mampuru, the deputy head of the Special Investigative Unit, Stavros Nicolaou, a senior executive for a major pharmaceutical company, and Andile Dawn Mbatha, the chief financial officer of the Independent Electoral Commission.

But a trio of passionate cricket-lovers who have gone to town in recent times in their criticism of the organisation and the recently-resigned board have also found accommodation on the interim board.

The most astonishing appointment is that of Haroon Lorgat, who has been at the forefront of CSA’s critics and was the federation’s chief executive as recently as September 2017, before being deposed by the power bloc that included Thabang Moroe, whose tenure and subsequent suspension and firing have been central to CSA’s governance crisis. But Lorgat is an internationally-respected administrator who is a former CEO of the International Cricket Council and CSA was a stable organisation during his watch.

Omphile Ramela, the president of the South African Cricketers Association, has also been a strident critic of CSA on behalf of the players, while Judith February is a lawyer and governance expert for the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the Institute for Security Studies, as well as a respected columnist who has also expressed her dismay over the administration of a sport she is clearly passionate about.

Andre Odendaal, the former CEO of the Western Province Cricket Association and the Cape Cobras, is another appointee, who has had a long history in the game as a first-class player, administrator and historian.

There is also a member of the old guard on the interim board in Xolani Vonya, the recently-resigned Easterns president who has been a strong supporter of both Moroe and company secretary Welsh Gwaza, who has been seen as a stumbling block to change at the organisation.

Vonya has been a controversial figure because the Easterns union have been wanting to get rid of him for many months, including holding a vote of no confidence against him, but Moroe and Gwaza gave him legal support to fight his removal.

Members Council now looking for fit replacements as entire CSA Board resigns 0

Posted on October 27, 2020 by Ken

Following the resignation of the rest of the Cricket South Africa Board on Monday morning, the Members Council will now focus their efforts on setting up an interim board comprised of fit individuals to steer the federation to their AGM on December 5 and also formulate a new Memorandum of Incorporation for the election of directors.

The three remaining independent directors and the last non-independent director, Free State president Zola Thamae, all stood down on Monday morning, following the weekend resignations of five of the non-independent directors on the Board.

With no Board now in place, the 14-strong Members Council is currently in charge of CSA and their first order of business is to set up an interim board, none of whom will be directors from the last four years and none of whom will be eligible for the new permanent Board once it is in place.

The Members Council will present their plans to sports minister Nathi Mthethwa later on Monday, ahead of their scheduled meeting with him on Tuesday, and they will also consult with Sascoc over the composition of the interim board.

While ensuring independent directors are a majority on the board is one of the major recommendations of the Nicholson Commission, a big focus of the Members Council will be in ensuring these independents are fit to serve cricket, because they have been disappointed with the level of contribution made by the independent directors in recent years.

“Everyone on the Board has now gone and we will now move forward with our interim board plan. We want to send the Minister a response before our meeting on Tuesday. We’ve opened communication with Sascoc, but we need to nominate people who will add value to cricket, we need to guard against people coming in who are not going to help CSA.

“We want to get that interim board as clean as possible and you can’t serve on that body and then be a Board member afterwards because that would be a conflict of interest and we don’t want people to be persuaded into doing things that are not for the benefit of the game. Knowledge of cricket is going to be key and the biggest question facing us is whether we want totally independent figures or cricket people,” a provincial president who sits on the Members Council told The Citizen on Monday.

The administrator confirmed that they were trying to convince a recently retired Protea of high standing to swop his whites for a tie and sit on that interim board.

Much of the blame for CSA’s mess can be laid on the shoulders of previous independent directors, on whom the Board depends for expert corporate governance advice, who did not ensure those running the organisation stayed on the straight and narrow.

Minister Mthethwa ices Beresford’s cake 0

Posted on October 15, 2020 by Ken

A hard-hitting letter from Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa to Beresford Williams probably ices the cake in terms of sealing the fate of Cricket South Africa’s acting president, who has indicated his desire to stand for the permanent position at the AGM on December 5.

Williams was told by parliament’s sports portfolio committee to recuse himself from Tuesday’s hearing with CSA because he is implicated in the Fundudzi Forensic Report, not only for his involvement in a R5 million loan to the Western Province Cricket Association that he was formerly president of, but also being on the Board committee who appointed Thabang Moroe as full-time CEO in 2018 after he had been acting for a year despite him not meeting the minimum requirements for the post.

But Williams’ shares have fallen even further with the leaking of a letter from sports minister Mthethwa, who is clearly adamantly against Williams continuing as president. Replying to a letter from CSA, signed by Williams, which states that the CSA Board have decided not to step down and told Mthethwa he did not have the legal power to force them, the sports minister threatened: “As a parting shot, I wish to reiterate that I shall not be dissuaded from applying what the National Sport and Recreation Act 110 of 1998 enjoins me to do”.

The Mthethwa letter begins: “I note that instead of accurately depicting what was said at the meeting we had on 6 October, you have taken the liberty to put words into my mouth. To that end, I will use my response to correct some of the inaccuracies that are evident in your letter”.

Mthethwa went on to say he did not provide the directive for Williams and the Board to step down, but instead was agreeing with Sascoc’s call for this to happen.

“In addition to the National  Sport and Recreation Act 110 of 1998 you seem to selectively quote from, to show that I do not have the power to intervene, you are kindly reminded that as a sovereign country in which I am the Minister responsible for Sport, Arts and Culture, there is a raft of laws at my disposal, that empower me to deal effectively with recalcitrant behaviour within my portfolio,” Mthethwa stated.

The four main outcomes Mthethwa wants to see, according to his letter, are the full implementation of the Nicholson Commission recommendations, the appointment of a new, stable Board, effective transformation and the correct handling of the Fundudzi Forensic Report.

Apart from telling Mthethwa he did not have the power to force the Board to step down, CSA also said they viewed his intervention as government interference which probably “jeopardises CSA’s continued membership of the ICC”.

The bad news for CSA and Williams is that Mthethwa has the power to no longer recognise them as a national federation, thereby making their membership of the International Cricket Council moot in any case.

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  • Thought of the Day

    Philemon 1:7 – “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.”

    “Every disciple of Jesus has a capacity for love. The most effective way to serve the Master is to share his love with others. Love can comfort, save the lost, and offer hope to those who need it. It can break down barriers, build bridges, establish relationships and heal wounds.” – A Shelter From The Storm, Solly Ozrovech

    If there’s a frustrating vacuum in your spiritual life and you fervently desire to serve the Lord but don’t know how you’re meant to do that, then start by loving others in his name.

     



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