Omphile Ramela has told the Social Justice and Nation Building hearings that Graeme Smith’s appointment as Cricket SA’s director of cricket in 2020 was “unlawful” and did not follow correct procedure.
Ramela, a left-handed batsman during his 13-year career, was also the president of the SA Cricketers’ Association (Saca). In the recent CSA boardroom reshuffle, he became an interim board member. He was later removed from the interim board for allegedly being derelict in the performance of his functions as a director.
The interim board oversaw contracts but, according to Ramela, there was a lack of interest to review the details of Smith’s contract.
“They created all this huff and puff and smoke, dealt with everything, and left this one [Smith’s contract] which, it’s patently clear, has problems. Smith’s contract needs an investigation.”
Smith was appointed in an acting capacity in December 2019. In April 2020, CSA announced that he had signed a two-year contract as director of cricket. According to Ramela, Smith’s contract describes how he “does not actually work for CSA”.
“We have to ask, where is his money going? We need an investigation because if there is any sponsor or organisation that is manipulating the system for Graeme, then the full might of the law must descend on those people. If there is any wrong-doing the money must be recovered.
“This contract has too many discrepancies. So, CSA must deal with it. They must give an account of it, and say, ‘This is the state of it, this is what’s happening and this is the way forward’.”