Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Anil Nandlall yesterday defended the move by acting Chief Justice Ian Chang to grant an interim injunction restraining some 13 executive members of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) from functioning.
On Friday, Nandlall was successful in having Acting Chief Justice Ian Chang, grant the interim injuction which restrained the 13 GCB members from holding themselves out to be executive committee members or representatives of the GCB.
The Interim Injunction was granted by way of an ex parte application.
Acting Chief Justice Chang also granted a Mareva injunction or freezing order which effectively freezes the assets of the GCB.
The Chief Justice granted…. “a series of orders one set restrained the defendants from holding themselves out to be executives of the GCB,” Nandlall told Stabroek Sport last night.
The matter is returnable today.
“Those orders were sought as a result of the pronouncement by the acting Chief Justice last year,” Nandlall said.
Last August, in dismissing a case brought by Angela Haniff, secretary of the Berbice Cricket Board, against the election of Ramsey Ali as president of the GCB, the acting Chief Justice ruled that the GCB was an unincorporated private organization, comprised of the Berbice Cricket Board, the Demerara Cricket Board and the Essequibo Cricket Board, all of which were associations, incapable of suing or being sued.
He said the parties before him were legal nonentities and said the court was not the proper forum for any redress involving the GCB or any of its members.
“He recommended the intervention of the executive officer who wields authority over sport administration in Guyana to take immediate steps to put cricket administration on a legal footing,” said Nandlall.
But, Nandlall said, the Minister of Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony was resisted by “the people the Chief Justice said was unlawful.”
Nandlall said there was no enforceability and because the members of the GCB, who were invited to be a part of the process and solution for restructuring Guyana’s cricket, refused to play ball, they had no alternative but to go back to the acting Chief Justice to have those recommendations enforced.
“Every effort was made to make them a part of the solution,” Nandlall said.
Nandall said the WICB which should have rectified the situation in the first place took on the role of big combatant.
He said complaints were made repeatedly to the WICB about the very malpractices the GCB members have been accused of all to no avail.
“The WICB took issue with our attempts to rectify what is a serious disorder in Guyana’s cricket administration,” he said.
He said the matter was raised at the Caricom Sub committee level adding that they tried to get the WICB to..” work along with our efforts to remodel and re-craft the system.”
He said that for the next Caricom Head of Government meeting cricket administration will be a substantial issue on the agenda.
Nandlall said instead of the WICB investigate the complaints against the GCB, the stated that they recognized the Ramsey Ali-led administration.
“The WICB cannot recognise a body our Court says is unlawful by our legal system,” Nandlall argued.
He said that similar situations occurred in Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and the governments of those countries were forced to step in.
The ICC, he said, backed off and gave the countries two years to sort out their issues.
Asked what happens now, Nandall said the IMC will take over.
“The IMC has the mandate of the minister to administrate cricket,” he said, adding that the IMC was a sufficiently autonomous body which was comprised of a broad based group of persons drawn from across Guyana.
Asked whether a Guyana team will be able to continue playing in the regional Four-day competition since it is unlikely that the WICB will accept teams submitted by the IMC, Nandlall said if it comes to Guyana being suspended it will be worth it for he argued… “No pain no gain.”