Cricket

Majola must pay back bonus

2012-04-26 19:45
Gerald Majola (File)

Johannesburg - Suspended Cricket South Africa (CSA) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Gerald Majola and former CSA Chief Operations Officer (COO) Don McIntosh must repay millions of rands in underhanded bonus payments, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula confirmed on Thursday.

However, other members of CSA staff, who received a portion of R4.7 million in bonuses after the cricket body hosted the 2009 Indian Premier League tournament, would not be expected to pay back the money.

"The Nicholson report did not talk about a blanket approach in the recovery of bonuses," Mbalula said.

"The money will only be recovered from top management who received bonuses unlawfully." Mbalula was speaking after he met with the CSA board in Johannesburg on Thursday to discuss the cricket body's response to recommendations made by a ministerial inquiry led by retired judge Chris Nicholson.

Majola, who received R1.7m, and McIntosh, who got R1.4m shortly before he resigned from his post in July 2009, received two thirds of the total amount given to 40 members of CSA staff. The bonuses were not cleared by the cricket body's board or the remuneration committee.

Majola bore the brunt of the ministerial inquiry, which McIntosh escaped relatively unscathed, but Mbalula said his bonus would be recovered.

"A civil process will be launched for those outside CSA to be pursued." Mbalula believed this step was among a number of positive moves by CSA in the aftermath of the long-running bonus scandal.

"The appointment of a new acting president [Willie Basson], a new acting CEO [Jacques Faul], the disciplinary process of the incumbent CEO [Majola], the recovering of bonuses and a steering committee to restructure the governance procedures of CSA are the first steps in restoring public confidence and that of sponsors and other stakeholders." Mbalula said the CSA board would remain in office until its annual general meeting (AGM) at the end of September.

"This is being done in the best interests of stability and taking the game forward for the benefit of all its stakeholders," he said.

The board had not been asked to step down, Mbalula said. The executive members would be eligible for re-election at the AGM.

"The decision as to who will stand on the board will depend on the members of CSA because people must be elected to the board.

"We [the ministry] can't determine for them who will be eligible to stand." Mbalula said Majola and McIntosh did not yet face prosecution for their roles in the scandal, as there was an ongoing investigation.

"We have been informed that the Hawks are on top of the issue. Everyone is presumed innocent until proven otherwise."

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