Sports minister Nathi Mthethwa says he will suspend Cricket SA this week
Mthethwa and interim board disappointed after members council votes against a restructuring plan
Minister of sport Nathi Mthethwa has told the members council (MC) of Cricket SA (CSA) they have left him no choice but to invoke his powers in terms of the Sports Act and suspend the crisis-riddled organisation.
This comes a day after the MC, which is made up of the 14 presidents of affiliates, voted against amendments in the memorandum of incorporation (MOI) to allow for restructuring of the organisation’s administration, a majority independent board and an independent chair with no affiliation to cricket.
The MC is Cricket SA’s highest decision-making body.
“Minister Mthethwa has expressed his disappointment at the failure of the Cricket SA delegates to adopt the revised MOI‚” according to a statement from the minister’s office.
“The revised MOI that the affiliates decided against adopting constituted an agreement between the MC and the interim board.
“Accordingly‚ any failure to ratify such an agreement entered into by a duly authorised MC representative can only be interpreted as acting in bad faith.
“This turn of events‚ taking place at the back of several missed opportunities by the MC‚ has left the minister with no further option but to exercise his rights in terms of section 13(5) of the Sports Act.
“To this end‚ the minister will be taking the necessary steps required to exercise his rights in terms of the law prescripts [in the week ahead],” the statement said.
The Cricket SA interim board, which was appointed by Mthethwa in October and incorporated in November‚ also released a statement and registered its disappointment.
“These proposed changes would be in line with the Nicholson report and good corporate governance‚” it said.
The interim board had held several consultative sessions with the MC over the past few months, it noted.
“In addition‚ Prof Michael Katz has also consulted and provided legal advice to the MC on the proposed amendments.
“Disappointingly‚ the MC voted not to accept the amendments to the MOI, which would have steered Cricket SA on a new path and restored confidence with its stakeholders.
“Despite the [interim board] requesting transparency‚ the MC insisted on a secret ballot,” the statement quoted Cricket SA interim board chair Stavros Nicolaou as saying.
“What happened today was extremely disappointing and certainly not in the best interests of cricket,” he said.
Under section 13(5) of the Sports Act‚ the minister can direct his department to refrain from funding Cricket SA and notify the organisation in writing that it will not be recognised by Sport and Recreation SA.
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