I repeat my brother’s idea of a scorebook audit (‘Let the game decide,’ SN, Feb 17, 2011). He wrote it a year ago in the context of resolving the problem of the warring Demerara cricket boards.
In the present context we have the legal fact established by the Chief Justice that the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) is not a legal entity. We the people must therefore make it so. It is our cricket that is at stake. Government is our executive arm and surely the Ministry of Sport can act on our behalf. Naturally, since we aspire to be law-abiding citizens, the Ministry of Sport must also act legally and within all possible rules. This means acting according to the Laws of Guyana and of international cricket if we expect to be world citizens in this game; and it also means we must be patient without being dilatory about the outcome, with timely urgings and advice from citizens.
Therefore while creating an Interim Management Committee (IMC) may be within the Laws of Guyana, it conflicts with present international practice when it seeks to replace the GCB. What the Ministry of Sport should be doing is investigating the GCB. But I do not think they will succeed by sending the police to the GCB members. What they should really be looking for are the scorebook records.
Cricket clubs and associations make up the County Cricket Boards, which in turn make up the GCB. Therefore, just as citizens have to undergo a registration exercise before exercising their franchise in elections, so must the cricketers and clubs and associations be registered. The present evidence for this must be the scorebooks and valid records of cricket matches organised and played – strictly nothing else. This will eliminate favouritism and representatives and delegates who have not done enough in the past year or era. These are the people who are supposed to elect and constitute the cricket boards.
Is the IMC itself a legal entity? Can it sue or be sued? I strongly advise our esteemed national hero, Mr Clive Lloyd, to call for submission of scorebooks (or information on their whereabouts in case they become contentious objects), for which the Ministry of Sport will issue receipts, when he is meeting people around the country. The number of valid matches played must be determined and delegates assigned accordingly. I am not saying this will be easy, but the principle seems sound to me. If not, then I am sure it is not beyond the wit of Guyanese intellects to suggest changes that will not alter the fairness and objectivity of the exercise.
The Ministry of Sport should then facilitate the setting up of clubs and associations that are legal entities. ‘Facilitate’ is the key word. We should not want the government to run the things, only to set the rules of audit and expeditiously arbitrate on the fairness of the procedures, otherwise lengthy court disputes, which cannot be discounted, could follow. In short, national government should promote local (self-)government.
When a GCB can then legally be constituted transparently from the ground up, I cannot see how even the WICB much less the ICC can refuse accreditation.