CSA member claims R600 000

2012-02-07 09:39
Ajay Sooklal - Head of CSA Legal and Governance Committee (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - A Cricket South Africa board member has shocked his colleagues by claiming R600 000 from the organisation for, among other things, text messages and parking costs.

According to The New Age website, in an unexpected twist of events at Cricket South Africa (CSA), Ajay Sooklal has created a storm with his unprecedented claim, made in two separate invoices sent to CSA late last year.

Sooklal claims over R200 000 in the first invoice for “miscellaneous disbursements including faxes, text messages, telephone calls, emails, parking and tollgate fees” - for trips to meet clients in Port Elizabeth and at CSA offices.

In the second invoice, submitted in October, the legal and governance chairperson claims more than R400 000 for, among other services: “taking instructions, attending board meetings and press conferences”.

However, the less than impressed CSA’s compliance secretariat manager, Pume Canca, responded by saying: “The board would like you to explain why you charged professional fees in respect of matters set in your invoices, when the work was supposed to be done in your capacity as a member of the board’s legal and governance committee.”

Labour law specialist Sandile July left the door open for CSA and Sooklal to make successful arguments.

“If the work was done outside CSA’s time then a board member can bill the association but not if it was during time set aside for board meetings. Even then it first has to be pre-approved by the board,” said July.

Although Sooklal has also been asked to explain the critical submissions he made to the Judge Chris Nicholson inquiry, CSA spokesperson Michael Owen-Smith denied suggestions that Sooklal was being victimised.

“That is nonsense. We don’t victimise people. He is not the only board member who made submissions to the inquiry,” said Owen-Smith.

The CSA letter to Sooklal partly reads: “The board is alarmed at the contents of your submissions and require you to give a detailed explanation.”


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