Sports minister Nathi Mthethwa has backed off after all the parties involved came to a suitable agreement
Cricket South Africa has avoided being defunded and derecognised by South Africa’s sports minister Nathi Mthethwa, whose office confirmed he will withdraw his notice to intervene in the organisation, which was published in the government gazette on Friday.
Last week, Mthethwa informed CSA of his intention to use the National Sports and Recreation Act to strip them of their status as the governing body for cricket in the country, an act which would have left South Africa unable to play international matches. But after the Members’ Council – the body made up of 14 provincial presidents who hold CSA’s highest decision-making authority – agreed to a majority independent board, Mthethwa will step aside.
“As the sole purpose of my intervention into the affairs of CSA was to facilitate a negotiated solution in respect of governance best practice, I have, based on the confirmation from CSA’s Acting President and IB Chairperson, instructed my Department to immediately initiate the requisite process to withdraw the notice,” Mthethwa said in a statement.
This means that CSA have agreed to a new memorandum of incorporation – a document which sets out the rights, duties and responsibilities of anyone involved in a company – which contains the framework for a majority independent board, something the Members’ Council have been resistant to accept for almost a decade.
A majority independent board is considered to be a pillar of good corporate governance and would mean that CSA’s board will be mostly made up of people from outside the provincial cricket structures, which could include those in the corporate or non-governmental sector. The new board members will be nominated by a committee, which will be finalised in the coming weeks. The establishment of a new board will bring the Mthethwa-imposed interim board’s tenure to end on May 15.
The interim board will submit a final report to Mthethwa and will continue to oversee the disciplinary procedures of former acting CEO Kugandrie Govender and company secretary Welsh Gwaza. It is also preparing CSA for an AGM, which was postponed from last August. The AGM and final report will mark the end of Mthethwa’s involvement in CSA.
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo’s South Africa correspondent