President of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) Ramsey Ali yesterday refuted claims that an Interim Management Committee (IMC) was formed to run cricket in Guyana, maintaining that no one has sent his administration a directive to step down from office.
The article “Ramsey Ali pretending to be legit GCB officials- some IMC members say” appeared in yesterday’s edition of the Stabroek News where some cricket officials suggested that an IMC was being formed to run cricket in Guyana. The officials had also said that “as long as Ramsey Ali continues to be head of GCB we will continue to see the decline [of cricketing standards on and off the field]. It is serving Ramsey Ali to be the head because he has no interest in fixing this problem.”
However, yesterday at the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB)office, Ali said that he was addressing members of the media as president of that entity, while sounding a warning to his detractors to stop hiding behind the veil of “anonymous sources and unnamed officials.”
In fact Ali said that he had met with Sport Minister Dr. Frank Anthony to ascertain the terms of reference for the formation of the IMC, which was recommended by President Bharrat Jagdeo after acting Chief Justice Ian Chang had struck out a case that was brought by Secretary of the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) Angela Haniff. These events came in the aftermath of the controversial July 10 GCB elections. Ali also said that when he had met with Minister Anthony he had made a series of proposals on what should be done to remedy the situation. He maintained his position yesterday that he was not at liberty to discuss what those proposals are. Further, Ali pointed out that the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) had written Minister Anthony seeking “clarity of the IMC” but to date no response has been given to this request.
“Some people are bent on destroying the structure of cricket in Guyana and I don’t understand why. We have (the GCB) just conducted a well-organised tour of the West Indies/Pakistan Women and our (Guyana’s) Under-19 girls also defeated Trinidad & Tobago who have the best ladies programme in the Caribbean so that should tell people we are doing something right,” Ali stated.
The GCB head also revealed that there will be a curator’s workshop on September 26-27 with International Cricket Council (ICC) pitch consultant Andy Atkinson. Ali also claimed that throughout the planning for the West Indies/Pakistan tour the minister was being kept abreast, adding that the minister also made his input for the smooth flow of operations. Public Relations Officer of the GCB, Terry Holder, added that Jagdeo and Anthony have taken note of the persons who are “deliberately making efforts to destabilise cricket development and go against the initiative of healing.”
Ali, responding to comments made by the officials, said that the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) recognises the present cricket board, debunking rumours that it “has an incestuous relationship” with the regional governing body.
Ali also repeated a previous comment he had made to this publication that he had spoken with WICB president Julian Hunte and he had said that should the board be dissolved and the IMC take over, the West Indies/Pakistan women’s matches and the 50-over tournament in October would have been pulled from Guyana. Following Jagdeo’s intervention Hunte had visited Guyana to meet with Jagdeo, Anthony and former West Indies captain and current International Cricket Council’s match referee Clive Lloyd. However, Hunte left Guyana without speaking to the media and there has been very little forthcoming from the government about the discussions. Meanwhile, Assistant Secretary/Treasurer of the GCB Dru Bahadur, emphasised that ever since the elections of July 10 “there have been lots of rumours being peddalled about the board being illegal.” He said that he is a certified accountant and he will never be a part of any institution that is illegally constituted.
He indicated that there are “evil and malicious forces out there” that are trying to break up the board but with all their efforts “the GCB will emerge even stronger.”
He also urged members of the public who have any queries about the operations of the board to “feel free to contact any member of executive.” Current vice-president of the GCB, Alfred Mentore, said that with the attack on the board “these persons” are running the risk of losing corporate support and damaging the reputation of people on the board.