’Executive presidency’ not reflective of Windies values: Skerritt

Ricky Skerritt has received the full support of Sir Vivian Richards.

BASSETERRE, St Kitts, CMC – Cricket West Indies presidential candidate, Ricky Skerritt has charged that incumbent Dave Cameron plans to convert the top post into an executive position, and contends such a move is a betrayal of long-held West Indies cricket values.

Describing the plan as “troubling” the former Cabinet minister here said it would result in an “autocratic leadership structure”, which would diminish the importance of CWI’s paid executives.

“After six years as President, Dave Cameron’s intention to implement sweeping changes to the democratic process of decision-making within West Indies Cricket is troubling,” Skerritt said.

“His desire to lead CWI as a full-time Executive, is not reflective of the West Indies cricket ethos. By advancing his plans for an autocratic leadership structure, which marginalizes the role of commercially recruited executives, the incumbent has placed his personal thinking diametrically opposed to the values of West Indies cricket.”

Skerritt this week announced his bid to challenge Cameron, with running mate Dr Kishore Shallow contesting the vice-presidency against Emmanuel Nanthan.

The 62-year-old Skerritt is a former tourism and sports minister in St Kitts, and a former manager of the West Indies team. Shallow, meanwhile, is an information technology and business consultant, who is the current president of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Cricket Association.

The pair, both CWI directors, have already received the backing of the Leeward Islands Cricket Board and the Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board, with 12 votes up for grabs at the March 24 elections scheduled for Jamaica.

Skerritt and Shallow have laid out a 10-point “Cricket First” plan which has as some of its aims a renewed investment in grassroots cricket, the modernisation of coaching education and enhancement of the franchise system.

In addition to their Cricket Plan, Skerritt and Shallow have proposed a six-year term limit on the CWI presidency, similar to what was recently enacted by the Vincentian association.

Shallow said such a move would enhance the organisational structure and reduce much of the politics involved in the presidency.  “I am convinced that a Presidential term limit will remove much of the uncertainty and anxiety caused by the cricket politics and excesses that too often surround the office of President,” Shallow pointed out.

Cameron is bidding for a fourth straight term as president after taking over from St Lucian diplomat Julian Hunte in 2013.

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