Kudos to Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson-Miller for taking a stand on the Chris Gayle-West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) issue and the incompetence of those who run West Indies cricket. The response by the WICB was not only out of order and illogical, but also arrogant and disrespectful to a head of government.
To suggest that a head of government was misinformed on a matter that has been so highly publicised is indicative of the attitude of the WICBC over the years that it is the only repository of what is accurate and valid. Furthermore, the claim that Gayle’s comments were “tantamount to a member of the Jamaican Cabinet lambasting and deriding the leader of the Cabinet and fellow Cabinet colleagues and being returned to that august body without any accountability for his or her actions” is ludicrous at best. For one Gayle is not a member of the WICBC so he cannot be equated to a cabinet member. Secondly, like any citizen of the region, Gayle has the right to freedom of expression. Thirdly Gayle is not simply an employee of the board but a cricketer representing the entire West Indies and one who has done so with acclaim over the years. Finally the WICBC is not a ruling cabinet with political power or a corporate board in charge of private interests, but a group delegated to take care of our cricket and that delegation comes from the people of the region.
The simple fact is that Gayle’s comments reflect the views and feelings of the majority of West Indian cricket fans and lovers, Thus if the WICB was not a group of self-righteous dons, it would have taken cognisance of the sentiments of Gayle and the thousands of others expressed over the years and really put in place recommendations to address its incompetence and maladministration of the past two decades or so.
Ms Portia Simpson-Miller has taken a stand. It is time that other heads of state and governments join her in calling on the WICBC for accountability and reform so that our cricket can get back on a footing that would lay the base for its rise once again.
Meanwhile we ask all fans and lovers of West Indies cricket to please do the following:
1. Write letters to the media calling on governments to follow the lead of the Jamaican Prime Minister.
2. Call, fax or write the West Indies Cricket Board of Control to express your views about their incompetence and mismanagement.
3. Log on the Facebook page ‘Guardians of WI Cricket’, click the like button (https:// www.facebook.com/pages/Guardians-Of-WI-Cricket/353213088034412?sk=wall&filter=1) and share your views. Also invite others to do so.
4. Sign the petition that will be sent to the WICBC – link on the FB page ‘Guardians of WI Cricket.’ The petition will be available soon.