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Ken Borland



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.

SACA entreat CSA Board to resign – ‘the only way to end the impasse’ 0

Posted on October 15, 2020 by Ken

The South African Cricketers’ Association – the players’ union – on Wednesday entreated the Cricket South Africa Board to stand down following sports minister Nathi Mthethwa’s threat to intervene in the affairs of the embattled federation due to the impasse between government and CSA.

SACA chief executive Andrew Breetzke said in a statement that the only way to end the impasse between CSA and Sascoc and the sports minister was for the Board to resign and be replaced by an interim board. He said the alternative was the International Cricket Council suspending South Africa’s membership, causing enormous disappointment and hardship for the players and the sport itself.

“SACA believes that an interim board of directors must be established to stabilise the organisation. This interim board should include a SACA player’s representative as well as a representative from the remaining stakeholders in the game (sponsors and broadcasters). Furthermore, the interim board should appoint an experienced administrator to assist in the operational work that is required at CSA, ensuring a link between the interim board and operational staff.
“Cricket is in an existential crisis, and the intervention of government will result in the ICC reviewing CSA’s position as an ICC Member, and will furthermore jeopardise the England tour scheduled for next month. Players will suffer, development will suffer and the future of the game will be prejudiced. However, as has been recognised by Department of Sports, Arts & Culture and Sascoc, the current board has no credibility to resolve the crises, and it is clear that the current impasse between government and CSA will not be resolved until such time as the board stands down. We therefore implore the CSA Board to stand down and thereby take a decision that will be in the best interests of cricket,” Breetzke said.

SACA’s position is that an interim board has to be in place first, because the current directors are unable to self-correct. The interim board will then drive the restructuring of the board to ensure it is fully compliant with the recommendations of the Nicholson Commission, which came out eight-and-a-half years ago.

“As we have stated previously, CSA is not able to self-correct, and the intervention of government is further evidence of this. The current governance structure of CSA must be reviewed, and this has been acknowledged by CSA. The interim board must facilitate the implementation of the Nicholson recommendations through amendments to the Memorandum of Incorporation, as this will allow for an effective Board of Directors to ultimately take over the responsibility of the governance of the game.

“The Fundudzi Forensic Report has identified various failures in governance, failures that have consistently been highlighted by SACA, and this is the opportunity to remedy these for the sake of the game and ensure that experienced personnel are recruited into key executive positions,” Omphile Ramela, the SACA president, said.

Dr Eugenia in hot water with CSA & sponsors 0

Posted on September 17, 2020 by Ken

Controversial Cricket South Africa independent director Dr Eugenia Kula-Ameyaw’s tweet which appeared to threaten sponsors Momentum has landed her in hot water with the sports federation apologising to the financial services provider, distancing themselves from her statement and reporting her to their Social and Ethics Committee.

Momentum announced on Tuesday that they will not renew their sponsorship of men’s one-day cricket with CSA next April, but will honour their contract as title sponsors of the national women’s side through to April 2023. Kula-Ameyaw then sent out a tweet on Tuesday night saying: “Momentum forgets that we invest hundreds millions in Momentum in our SOE investments and pension funds. I remember asking for the BBBEE certificate in my other board. Just check before you make any irrational decision.”

Kula-Ameyaw erred in casting aspersions about Momentum’s transformation credentials because they have had Level I B-BBEE status for the last two years. And her antagonistic approach to sponsors could be seriously damaging to CSA as they desperately try and find new backers during these tough economic times. Given the Board’s existing lack of credibility and now this social media blunder by someone who is tipped to become the Lead Independent Director, even though she was only appointed to the Board on an interim basis in May, more current and prospective sponsors are likely to say getting involved in cricket is not their cup of tea.

“CSA sincerely apologises to Momentum for the unfortunate and unwarranted tweets made by one of our Board members, in her personal capacity. CSA wishes to reiterate that Dr Eugenia Kula-Ameyaw did not act in her professional position as a non-executive board member of CSA. While we respect the personal views of all South Africans, CSA wishes to distance itself from the articulations made by Dr Kula-Ameyaw on Twitter.

“We further wish to reiterate that CSA does not ascribe to the views expressed regarding Momentum and we sincerely value the benefits Momentum and all our sponsors bring in making cricket accessible and inclusive for all South Africans. We thank Momentum for the substantial contributions they have made towards cricket upliftment and the milestones we achieved through their sponsorship,” acting CSA president Beresford Williams said in a statement released on Wednesday.

The CSA Members Council, which has been flexing its muscles against the Board of late, has also reported Kula-Ameyaw’s behaviour to the Social and Ethics Committee.

“CSA is taking this matter very seriously and in light of the reputational damage potentially caused, CSA’s Members’ Council has referred the matter to the Social and Ethics Committee and once all internal processes have been completed, the necessary corrective action will be taken,” the statement said.

Momentum were also baffled by Kula-Ameyaw’s jibe at their transformation efforts.

“We’re not exactly sure what Dr Kula-Ameyaw meant by the comment, since we have been working really hard to transform as a company. We achieved Level 1 Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment status two years ago, and have retained this status. Our B-BBEE certificate is available on our website.

“In spite of the comment, we are not reconsidering our relationship with CSA. We look forward to continuing our support of the Momentum Proteas national women’s team on their journey to success,” Head of Sponsorships Carel Bosman said.

Kula-Ameyaw has also in the last week on Twitter accused critics of “brown envelope tendencies”, praised the EFF and seemed to indicate she wielded “power” by interfering in selection matters.

Sascoc intervention a massive irony … but it may introduce top-class people 0

Posted on September 15, 2020 by Ken

There is a massive irony in a body such as Sascoc, wracked by internal strife and lacking credibility, making an intervention in the affairs of Cricket South Africa, a federation that seems to daily provide a new definition of rock-bottom.

But one can only hope this is a rocket (a spark would have little effect on the thick-skinned people sitting on the CSA Board) that leads to a real shift in the mindsets of those arrogant directors that refuse to budge a centimetre from a place at the top table of a sport they have parasitized rather than served.

If Sascoc threatening to take over does not force the CSA Board into standing down and releasing the Fundudzi Forensic Report, then the next option has to be for them to be threatened with being declared delinquent directors. There have been a litany of governance disasters at CSA over the last couple of years and there is no way they can continue to deny their own involvement and culpability.

There is no doubt people like former CEO Thabang Moroe and company secretary Welsh Gwaza have been involved in malfeasance, but who appointed and enabled these self-serving charlatans? The directors did and they have failed in their fiduciary duties, which have a clear legal basis.

The Members Council and the CSA Board of Directors are meeting together in Johannesburg over the weekend and, as one delegate put it, this is “make-or-break” time for the organisation. Will selfish, individualistic priorities prevail and continue the death spiral into chaos and oblivion? Or will there finally be some leadership and accountability shown?

Either way, Sascoc are going to impose a task team inquiring into CSA’s affairs, which is no bad thing. But if leadership and accountability win the day then there are enough top-class people who love cricket who will be able to step into the leadership vacuum and help CSA back to stability.

One of those is Judith February, a lawyer based at the Institute for Security Studies, the former head of IDASA’s governance programme, a Visiting Fellow at the Wits School of Governance, a trustee of the Nelson Mandela Foundation and a massive cricket fan.

“You cannot be on a board and not take responsibility, resigning just before the AGM is too little, too late because they have presided over matters to that point. Directors have left in silence or written letters, but it was because they did not flex their muscles that Thabang Moroe was allowed to operate in that way. CSA’s Memorandum of Incorporation is very clear and they have breached it on every front.

“We can join the dots intelligently and see that there is something deeply wrong with the system and the people who manage it and the people who oversee them. A clean break is the best option and clearly we need to interrogate why someone of such integrity and capability as Jacques Faul could find no space to work in CSA. The players’ statement about the boardroom shenanigans was also really important,” February said this week in a Daily Maverick webinar discussing cricket in South Africa’s fight for survival.

Does February, a governance specialist and former executive director of the HSRC’s Democracy and Governance unit, not just sound like the perfect candidate to be an independent director on a new-look CSA Board?

There are also some brilliant, impressive people on the Members Council – one thinks of Ben Dladla, Craig Nel, Anne Vilas and Tebogo Siko – who are dong their best to restore the credibility of CSA, but their efforts are being stymied by the presence of seven directors of the Board in the 14-strong Members Council itself.

The Nicholson Inquiry, which the CSA Board have now committed to return to eight years after its release, called for change in how the Board was constituted, recommending nine of the 12 directors be independents.

But in 2013 it was the selfsame Sascoc who refused to accept that and pressured CSA (although it probably suited their Board back then too) into going with a 7-5 split in favour of non-independents. And that’s a major reason why CSA are in the mess they are in now.

Directors without the competence, skills or experience to run a billion-and business have been voted in to ensure certain powerful figures enjoy support and can dispense patronage in return. In some cases, these directors have been earning twice as much from Board fees as from their ‘main’ source of income; no wonder they are desperate to keep their noses in the CSA trough.

In the coming weeks, Sascoc have a vital role to play in supporting the efforts of those who want to change this system and put cricket back in the control of people who firstly love and serve the game, and secondly have the expertise to run it properly.

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    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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