The Essequibo Cricket Board (ECB) yesterday pledged its support to the Interim Management Committee (IMC) to end the current crisis facing Guyana’s cricket, a decision that IMC chairman Clive Lloyd called a landmark move.
The ECB can be considered in some way as being responsible for the crisis facing Guyana’s cricket when they voted last July for Ramsey Ali to become president of the GCB. Yesterday they attempted to be the solution.
Represented by ECB president Sheik Ahmad and secretary Otto Christiani, members of the media were informed of the reasons for their volte-face.
”The Essequibo decision was based on a consensus of the members of the executive and area boards of the ECB. Our decision was based on the principle that Guyana needed a solution to this problem,” Ahmad said.
According to Ahmad, the ECB earlier this month met with the Government of Guyana and the IMC where they articulated their position.
“We had a meeting with the minister (Dr. Frank Anthony) and we had a meeting with the Honourable Clive Lloyd. We met and we put forward our position that we wanted to come on board. We have named our representatives to the IMC and as far as we are concerned, we are working fully with the IMC in terms of cricket in Guyana. We recognize no other authority in this country but the IMC,” said Ahmad.
According to Ahmad, the ECB was not coerced into making the decision.
“We want to say our decision was based on our own conscience. Nobody has forced us or intimidated us to be a part of this process. We came and we bought into this process because we saw this as a solution to the crisis that is facing Guyana’s cricket,” he added.
Ahmad, a former treasurer of the GCB, said the ECB was going to co-operate fully with the IMC.
“We are going to fully co-operate with the IMC and the Government of Guyana to solve this cricket issue. We are going to do everything that Essequibo can do to co-operate, to assist, to help in every possible way – whether it’s on the field or off the field – we are working with the IMC,” he declared.
Ahmad also spoke of his board’s decision to assist the Government of Guyana in acquiring the assets of the GCB.
“We are also aware of the fact that the ECB has been caught up with this DEB company situation. We want to let the general public know and the Guyanese people at large, that we are working on a process to relieve ourselves of this company and to assist the government in acquiring the assets of the GCB.
“Cricket is everybody’s business and we don’t want to be part of a process that impedes the development of cricket in this country,” he added.
Secretary of the ECB Otto Christiani endorsed the views of Ahmad.
“I would just like to say that what you have heard from the president is exactly what the position is in Essequibo and the ECB is fully behind the IMC,” said Christiani.
Chairman of the IMC, Clive Lloyd, hailed the decision of the IMC as a giant step forward in resolving the current dispute.
”Today for me is a landmark situation in the sense that the Essequibo Cricket Board (ECB) is now pledging its support to the IMC. To me that’s a very important move. We’ve made a lot of progress. We’ve had consultations in the three different counties and a lot of things came out of that. For me, today is a very, very important day,” he reiterated.
Lloyd said the IMC had wholeheartedly embraced the ECB. “I sincerely hope that out cricket continues to blossom. So really and truly I do congratulate the ECB. I know that it’s a giant step and I hope that they will be happy with the outcome in the not too distant future.”