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Cricket SA interim board proposes seven independent directors in new 13-member board

Tiisetso Malepa Sports reporter
Cricket SA HQ in Johannesburg.
Cricket SA HQ in Johannesburg.

The Cricket South Africa (CSA) interim board has proposed that the incoming board be increased to 13 members with a majority of independent directors and a board chairperson who has no cricket affiliation.

The proposal‚ however‚ is likely to be met with strong opposition from the clubs‚ which constitute the CSA membership.

In a discussion document marked as “working draft” that TimesLIVE has seen‚ the interim board is advocating for seven independent and four non-independent directors to be on the board that will take over after the annual general meeting (AGM) next month.

The interim board is also calling for the CEO and CFO to be incorporated as directors to complete the new 13-member composition.

Among the key recommendations in the discussion document is that the CSA board chairperson must be independent and without any affiliation with cricket while the appointment of independent and non-independent directors will be determined by a nominations committee.

As things stand‚ the CSA MOI (Memorandum of Incorporation‚ which serves as a constitution) prescribes that the board chairperson and president should be elected from ranks of provincial presidents and the appointment of directors being the responsibility of the members council.

Some of the powers of the members’ council‚ as things stand‚ are to amend the MOI‚ change competition structures‚ and appoint and recall directors.

The interim board has distributed its proposals to the clubs for comments and Thursday was the deadline for submissions.

The members council‚ upon receiving the submissions‚ would discuss the interim board proposals and then send the discussion document to Sascoc for final ratification.

Sascoc president Barry Hendricks said his organisation had not received the working draft document from CSA and therefore cannot comment.

CSA acting president Rihan Richards‚ who is the chairperson of the members council comprised of provincial presidents‚ said “the members council is waiting for all submissions from clubs to be received and discussed before making comments”.

Insiders have told TimesLIVE that the interim board’s proposals are likely to be rejected by the CSA membership‚ or clubs‚ and Sascoc‚ the mother body of all sports federations.

The insiders say the clubs are of the view that the proposals are designed to strip the powers of the members council.

“For an instance‚ the appointment of directors has always been the responsibility of the members council as per the existing CSA MOI. If the board is not appointed by the members council‚ then who will that board be accountable to?” said one insider.

“Another thing is the increase of the number of independent directors to seven. People who run cricket‚ who are the non-independent directors‚ must be in the majority.

“It can’t be that the independents outweigh the non-independents because the non-independents are actually the representatives of the shareholders‚ who are the unions and the clubs.

“Cricket‚ or any sport for that matter‚ should be run by cricket people in the main and complemented by independent directors.”

Another insider pointed to the recommendations of the Zulman commission which was commissioned to investigate the governance lapses at Sascoc.

“One of the key Zulman recommendations was that the Sascoc president must be independent and must not belong to any sport body. Zulman also said that an independent committee should appoint the Sascoc president.

“What happened to that recommendation? It was rejected.

“Sascoc rejected the recommendation and were clear that their general assembly must elect the board chairperson and the president. What did the minister do? Nothing.”

CSA communications boss Thamie Mthembu said the discussions between the interim board and all stakeholders are ongoing.

“CSA will issue a statement as soon as all consultations regarding the MOI have been concluded.”