Government should be supported in its proposal re GCB

Dear Editor,

While I do not in principle support government’s involvement in the running of cricket the following developments have caused enough concern to warrant such an intervention:

1.  The Chief Justice court order/ruling has clearly defined the GCB, DCB, BCB and ECB as legal non-entities that cannot sue anyone or be sued. He further said that all parties involved in the July 10 election are legal non-entities and the court is not the proper forum for any relief or redress involving the parties. This includes Angela Haniff, Plaintiff in her capacity as Secretary of BCB and all the defendants who constitute Ramsey Alli’s purported Board.

Suffice it to say that the GCB, BCB, ECB and DCB are not accountable to any person or authority except themselves, and if funds received are stolen or misappropriated neither they nor their unincorporated membership associates can be complainants in civil proceedings for lack of legal personality. They make their own rules and procedures for the conduct of their affairs, the breach of which cannot be challenged in court. Given the recent financial woes of the Board and the fact that lawlessness has overtaken its operations this is a most intolerable situation.

2.  The Ramsay Alli Board has been elected with 9 Essequibians and 1 defecting Berbican voting from an expected delegate representation of 27; as a group they have not one single board president on their board. Only Fizul Bacchus of the Essequibo Board is on the new panel whilst none of the other members belong to any county board.

Mr Black, the Berbice defector, and Mrs Nurse who attended then withdrew from voting, were made managers of the male and female senior teams respectively. Mr Alli himself on a television programme promised to attend to the very financial issues raised by the majority of previous executives as needing to be straightened out before an election, and said this would be the first operation of his executive. This has not been done. These include, reconciling audited and GCB accounts, Pakistan Tour, U-19 Regional Tournament, Women’s Inter-county Tournament, assets register and location of Board assets, plus funds disbursed  to the Essequibo Board from June 2010 to date, all of which have not been previously accounted for.

In the wake of this pot-pourri of lawlessness there are the suggestions of the Chief Justice that:

1.  The Minister of Sport use his executive authority to intervene immediately.

2.  Legislation be enacted to regularize this unlawful situation, thereby bringing order and legality to cricket and other sports.

It is against this background that I support the involvement of the government, and applaud the President for his timely entry into this unacceptable situation. He did take the pains to explain that government wasn’t interested in running cricket and he would expect a speedy resolution so that a properly structured, legal, cricket environment could evolve out of the deliberations, on a level playing field giving fairness and transparency to any election process.  What more could we desire?

Some journalists seem continually tied to their emotions and are so utterly compromised that they cannot discern the bushes from the trees. They are lost in a world of their own.

All of a sudden the WICB has so much authority. Where was the WICB or ICC over the past two years of widespread lawlessness?  Why did they not intervene?  Must our government sit by idly and allow this perverse situation to continue unabated? No responsible government would do so.

Should we allow an illegal non-entity that accounts to nobody but itself to continue running cricket in this country, according to how they feel and how they choose?

Let us bite the bullet, and let the chips fall where they may. The government has taken a proactive way forward and we must support them; it is only prudent and it seems to me that is the best way forward.

Yours faithfully,
Claude Raphael
Former Chairman
Snr Selection Panel

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