Port-of-Spain, Nov 18 (IANS) Former Trinidad and Tobago cricketer Zaheer Ali says he fully supports the immediate dissolution of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) as well as the appointment of an interim board to run the game in the region. However Ali, who chairs the working committee which focuses on the development of West Indies cricket at Hugh Wooding Law School, says he is opposed to the governance of West Indies Cricket being in the hands of Caribbean politicians, reports CMC.
The dissolution of the WICB was the main recommendation of a Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM) commissioned Cricket Review Panel which released a report last month. Chairman of CARICOM’s Cricket Governance Committee, Grenada’s Prime Minister Keith Mitchell, has made it clear that the body is not interested in running cricket and has referenced a recommendation from the panel that a change management expert be installed to help run the affairs of cricket in the region until a new governance structure is implemented.
“I am in full support of the dissolution of the West Indies Cricket Board Incorporation,” declared Ali in a release on Tuesday. “But at the same time I reject and immediately dismiss the idea of placing the governance of West Indies Cricket in the hands of persons who may be actively and directly involved in Caribbean politics or may have a political flavour”.
Ali is also advocating that the WICB be re-incorporated in one of the Caribbean islands that have adopted the Caribbean Court of Justice as its final Court of Appeal. He said that the present climate in West Indies Cricket is in urgent need of legal intervention in order to firmly uphold the rule of law, principles of democracy and transparency and accountability which according to him, are the issues that are affecting the governance of the game in the Caribbean. “We must be reminded that the many administrations of West Indies Cricket have been accused in the past of nepotism, discrimination and corruption and it is hardly digestible and believable that placing the governance of West Indies Cricket directly into the political domain would consolidate our vulnerable position,” he said.
“The stakeholders of West Indies Cricket must be empowered by having access to an entity like the Caribbean Court of Justice in order to hold the West Indies Cricket Board Incorporation accountable for its decisions”. The former cricketer is also recommending that a Caribbean Council for the development of West Indies Cricket, comprising a representative from each cricketing island, be established to assist and advise the WICB in reviewing its present Articles of Incorporation and by-laws. “This should be complemented by built-in mechanisms for effectively monitoring the administration of West Indies Cricket and provision of mediation forums to effectively address disputes and disagreements.”