Graeme Joffe

What a circus!

2013-03-12 11:56
Sport24 columnist Graeme Joffe (File)
So, the athletic “rebels” backed by SASCOC kind of got their way at the weekend with the overwhelming vote to impeach Athletics South Africa (ASA) president, James Evans.

But so many questions need to be asked about the validity of the meeting and the sinister role played by SASCOC, let alone the cheap death threat issued on national radio by the ASA “rebel” leader, Hendrick Ramaala.

What was Ramaala thinking during his interview on Radio 702 on Sunday night to say: “Your Athletics South Africa board members want James Evans dead or alive.”

As I write this, Ramaala still hasn’t had the decency to apologise to Evans and SASCOC have yet to even make a statement.

SASCOC CEO Tubby Reddy found a reason to threaten action against Geraldine Pillay for comments she made on Carte Blanche re: Oscar Pistorius Olympic selection, but not a word re: Ramaala’s violent attack on Evans. 

In a country that has a history of violence, how does SASCOC just let this pass?

Just shows you how the SASCOC mafia takes sides and only make a noise when it suits their needs.

Perhaps Mr Reddy would also like to answer some of these questions with regards the impeachment of Mr Evans.

Why did SASCOC pay for a meeting, which actually has nothing to do with them?

The head of SASCOC’s dispute resolution committee attends the meeting and makes rulings, without ever referring to both parties. How does one resolve disputes by speaking only to the one party?

They promise Athletics South Africa support but then withhold it while the person they don’t want is the president. No doubt they will flood the money in now.

Is that not how corruption is defined in the Act?

Mr Reddy is never able to answer these tough questions for fear of “impeaching” himself.

So, I need to ask the SASCOC board, which includes a DA member of government. Is this how sport should be run in South Africa and should the needs of the athletes and coaches not be a priority?   

SASCOC uses its mediation or disciplinary tribunals to score political points. These tribunals are loaded with Reddy’s men who do his bidding.

Watch what happens in the next few weeks with SAFA. Keep an eye on the ball for the hidden agendas.

As for the Cricket South Africa (CSA) appointment of a new CEO, why has SASCOC not shown some balls?

It is quite obvious that CSA has buckled to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and are now creating a smokescreen to defend their future position of possibly not appointing Haroon Lorgat as CEO.

A source tells me: 

• SASCOC does not want to embarrass CSA
• SASCOC does not want to upset/embarrass our government which has very good relations with India
• SASCOC does not want to embarrass the Minister of Sport who always talks about "our special relationship" with India   

CSA president Chris Nenzani was quoted as saying: “There has been a lot of speculation in the media regarding the appointment with several names being bandied about. There have even been suggestions that the appointment has already been made. The only name that CSA will release will be that of the successful candidate at the completion of the process. We are confident that the process will be completed by the end of April, 2013.”

Lorgat was a shoo-in for the CEO job about a month ago, until the BCCI walked to the wicket and a five-man CSA delegation flew first class to India a couple weeks ago to try and mend fences. 

It’s just not cricket.

SASCOC should be condemning the BCCI's opposition to Lorgat which is about him threatening their hegemony. SASCOC needs to condemn the interference of BCCI in SA sport and also reprimand CSA for its cowardly stance.

Is it not time for South Africa to have an independent sports mediation body that is legislated and outside the partisan interests of SASCOC or Sport and Recreation SA (SRSA)?

Of course it is.

But first, Mr Ramaala should resign from the ASA board with immediate effect and the SASCOC board should be impeaching its president and CEO for bringing all of SA sport into disrepute.

“Disrepute”, a word Tubby and co. know all too well.

Email Graeme at:

Catch Graeme Joffe on SportsFire every Monday and Thursday at 17:30 on Radio Today, 1485am in JHB, National on DStv audio channel 169 and streaming worldwide on Follow Graeme Joffe on Twitter: @joffersmyboy

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