(Caption) The prime minister of Pakistan and new patron of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Nawaz Sharif, has dissolved the governing board of the PCB, and formed a five-member interim management committee (IMC) to run cricket in the country. The PCB’s acting chairman Najam Sethi‚ former chairman Shahryar Khan, former players Zaheer Abbas and Haroon Rasheed, former team manager Naved Cheema were appointed to the committee.
The IMC was directed by Sharif to elect one of its members as chairman, and the committee unanimously chose Sethi, who has been acting as caretaker chairman since July and will represent Pakistan at the ICC board meeting on October 18 and 19 in London.
“The patron of PCB, the prime minister of Pakistan, has been pleased to direct the following: 1. Paragraph Section 41 of PCB constitution has been amended [implemented] and under the said paragraphs the board has been superseded,” the PCB said in a release. “An interim management committee has been constituted to ensure that PCB remains enabled to continue to perform day-to-day domestic and international functions for the promotion of the game and in line with the directions of the court.”
The new IMC, as one board official confirmed, is essentially a new name for an old method: run by ad-hoc. This is the sixth time the Pakistan board has resorted to being run ad-hoc, one of those instances being between 1999 and 2007.
While the board of governors has been dissolved, the constitution of the board, implemented in 2013, does not stand suspended. As stated in the board’s release, the dissolution occurred because of the implementation of Paragraph Section 41 of the current constitution, which allows for such a situation. That clause can be triggered, among other things, if the board is dysfunctional – which was essentially what the PCB had been arguing that the Islamabad High Court judgement severely curtailing Sethi’s powers as acting chairman had made it.
The dissolution is the outcome of an issue that began with the Islamabad High Court’s judgement on a constitutional writ petition challenging the election of the previous PCB chairman, Zaka Ashraf, who was then suspended and replaced temporarily by Sethi for a 90-day term. When Sethi, a senior journalist and former caretaker chief minister of Punjab, had his powers curtailed, the court had also set a deadline of October 18 for the PCB to hold fresh elections for chairman. But the PCB wasn’t able to comply with the deadline.
The reason best known to ESPNcricinfo for the noncompliance was an incomplete electoral college of many regional associations in Punjab – the largest province in the country – and the refusal of the Election Commission of Pakistan to hold the elections. The PCB had written three letters to the Election Commission in compliance with the court order but it learned the commission cannot carry out the election of an autonomous body. The PCB has appealed against the judgement of the Islamabad court but the appeal has been pending since July 25.