Cricket

CSA inquiry set to hot up

2011-11-29 15:34
CSA CEO Gerald Majola (File)

Johannesburg - An inquiry into Cricket SA and the bonus scandal that has been dogging the sporting body since 2009 is to hear evidence from several key figures this week.

The hearings in Pretoria, chaired by Judge Chris Nicholson, has seen some surprising revelations since it got underway a week ago.

While the bonus scandal has grabbed headlines, the committee is also examining solutions for malfunctions in the structures of CSA.

Minister of Sport Fikile Mbalula appointed the committee after a KPMG report recommended that CSA’s remuneration and travel allowance policy be reviewed.

The KPMG report found that the bonuses were kept secret from Cricket SA's remuneration committee, with CSA CEO Gerald Majola breaching the Companies Act on at least four occasions, and paying himself R1.8 million from the R4.7 million in bonuses.

On Thursday, representatives from CSA will make submissions with acting president AK Khan set to state his case.

CSA’s legal and governance committee head Ajay Sooklal was damning of Khan during his appearance in front of the inquiry on Monday.

Khan will appear in front of the committee with CSA chairmen of the financial and audit committees, John Bester and John Blair, independent attorney Yusuf Docrat, and advocate Nazir Cassim, who was part of the internal review committee into the bonuses.

CSA’s chief financial officer Nassei Appiah will also make submissions on Wednesday.

On Thursday, former CSA chief operations officer Don McIntosh will get his moment after remuneration committee chairman Paul Harris revealed on Thursday that Majola and McIntosh were paid double bonuses for the hosting of the 2009 Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament.

Harris told the inquiry that Majola and McIntosh had received an unaccounted R1.75 million and R1.47m respectively.

Former Gauteng Cricket Board (GCB) president Barry Skjoldhammer will also present oral evidence on Thursday.

Skjoldhammer and the GCB made complaints against Majola in 2009 regarding the handling of the IPL.

The CSA Members Forum subsequently placed a ban on the Wanderers Stadium hosting international matches until an apology had been offered.

Skjoldhammer was the casualty in the friction between the GCB and CSA when he was forced out of his position.

Former CSA audit committee chairman Colin Beggs is scheduled to make his presentation to the Nicholson hearing on Monday.

Sparks are set fly on Tuesday when Majola appears before the committee for the last presentation of the inquiry.

Four representatives of KPMG appeared before the committee on Wednesday, the opening day of the oral representations.

As expected former CSA president Mtutuzeli Nyoka made the most revealing submissions which shed some light on the blind faith he had put in Majola.

It was revealed that Majola enjoyed a R1 million travel allowance as well as an undisclosed bonus.

Nyoka told the committee that he had signed off on the travel allowance which was included in a contract with the knowledge that it was a salary adjustment contract.

He also accused Majola of misleading and deceptive behaviour and said the CSA board should be ashamed for their involvement in corruption.

The former president said he had disagreed with the CSA's decision in August 2010 to hold an internal inquiry into the misallocation of R4.5 million in bonuses, after it was agreed at three board meetings that an external inquiry was needed.

Nyoka called for an independent forensic audit into IPL bank account transactions in 2009 as well as new bonuses paid in 2011.

The inquiry resumed on Monday with Sooklal's revelation that Majola had determined his own sanction at a board meeting earlier this year.

Sooklal suggested that cricket be placed under administration in a similar manner to Athletics SA, which was suspended for a period by the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee in 2010.

SA Sports and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) CEO Tubby Reddy, who also made a submission on Monday, admitted to the committee that the Olympic body should have dealt with the bonus scandal better.

Reddy said he hoped that the committee would find what the appropriate action should be taken against whoever was guilty of wrongdoing.

Read more on:    csa scandal
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