Give cricket inquiry more powers: Former CSA president

Johannesburg: Mtutuzeli Nyoka, ousted twice as Cricket South Africa chief as he raised questions over irregularities of IPL bonuses that CSA chief executive Gerald Majola paid to himself and other staff, has called on the sports minister to give commission of inquiry wider powers.

Nyoka said the inquiry`s findings would have "a large effect on the future relationship between the paying public and sponsors on one hand, and the leadership of cricket (on the other)".

"(These findings) therefore cannot and should not be left to CSA, an organisation that has an uneasy relationship with accountability and corporate governance (and is) a body, which according to its own chairperson of the legal and governance subcommittee, Ajay Sooklal, is dysfunctional," Nyoka said.

Commenting on the reluctance of sponsors to come forward in the wake of the bonus debacle and increasing concern among grass roots organisations about the lack of funds for developmental cricket, Nyoka in a letter to the weekly City Press, said: "This matter has attained a high degree of significance in the eyes of the South Africa public.

"There is a realisation that it is no longer just a cricket issue, but a symptom of decay and of the rapidly declining standards in our society."

Nyoka was ousted in absentia after calling for an independent inquiry into the IPL bonus but was reinstated after court action.

He then instituted the independent inquiry, but was ousted again by the board, which said that "Nyoka had brought CSA into disrepute".

Nyoka said he supported the sentiments of retired judge Chris Nicholson, chairman of the three-person inquiry committee appointed by sports minister Fikile Mbalula last month after nearly two years of bitter wrangling at CSA over the IPL bonus issue.

After hearing from CSA executives including Majola, Nicholson said had the inquiry been given powers of cross-examination, it could have made findings that would be binding on all parties concerned.

The inquiry has taken a break and will resume its hearings in January, when former cricket supremo Ali Bacher is expected to deny claims by Majola that Bacher set a precedent for huge bonuses to be paid to CSA executives without informing the board.


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