It is important for Cricket South Africa to get rid of all its dirty laundry first before a new board is elected, writes ANDRE HUISAMEN.
This week’s annual general meeting should have been the start of a new administrative dawn for South Africa cricket. Yet, its postponement on Monday evening once again signalled one of the biggest sporting embarrassments in the country’s history.
It’s a welcome sign that CSA called off the AGM until further notice so that (hopefully) a sensible process can be followed to rid the organisation of all its toxic and corrupt individuals.
CSA’s indication that it wants to reassess the fundamental structures of corporate governance – based on outlines from the 2012 Nicholson Commission of Inquiry into Cricket report – is hopefully a step in the right direction. Remember, the governing body has completely ignored those recommendations for the past eight years and, as a result, hovers on the brink of collapse.
But, one of the core problems within CSA currently is its member council. It has largely turned a blind eye to the corrupt dealings that have financially drained the organisation.
It’s hardly surprising that the nine union presidents, who make up this council, have not been able to see the newly-released independent forensic report into the disturbing matters of CSA operations without signing a non-disclosure agreement.
It is also no surprise that seven of those presidents are current CSA board members, with some up for nomination for a number of the top positions in the new administration.
Ultimately, it is this biased and prejudiced network that has directly led to the failure of CSA’s core structures and disfunction in recent years.
Border Cricket president Simphiwe Ndzundzu is currently under investigation for the physical assault on a female staff member at his union. Yet, he has controversially been named a candidate for a position on the new board, while similarly Xolani Vonya, suspended president of Easterns, is also a nominee at the AGM.
The scary part is the fact these individuals receive nominations from within CSA, while many of them don’t even have the full support of their own unions.
It’s a recipe for disaster if these candidates are seen as the best administrative options available to take South African cricket forward.
That’s why the revisiting of the Nicholson report and the findings of the forensic audit should be used together to create a new functioning structure for the board and its members, providing a clean slate for a better financial environment.
The mess that has led CSA into this dark spot has largely happened under the watch of these members, who are now gunning for their own moment of glory at the helm of the organisation.
Until a proper cleanout is done at the highest national and provincial levels, and those who are implicated in any sort of unlawful behaviour aren’t removed from their positions, the AGM will not lead to the change needed in cricket.
Candidates need to be open to drive through a new and envisioned image of an inclusive norm of governance – putting the importance of our players and teams above their self-interest.