Pressing Issues: Lessons to be learnt from CSA saga

2012-03-17 18:00

The Cricket South Africa (CSA) saga should be a lesson that can be used as a sound foundation going forward for sport in this country.

It is quite a shame that we find ourselves where we are. This matter should have been dealt with swiftly and professionally by those in charge the moment the alarm was raised.

However, since South African sports administration has become more about personalities than what is in the interests of the game and the welfare of players, people tried to sweep the matter under the carpet.

Even the then CSA president, Dr Mtutuzeli Nyoka - this week - not for the first time, admitted that he initially acted to protect his “friend”, the beleaguered CSA CEO Gerald Majola.

While Nyoka has so far come out smelling of roses in this mess, he should also shoulder some blame. As the first citizen of cricket, he should have acted in the interests of the game from the onset.

Now we find ourselves back where we were in 1996 when then minister of sports, the late Steve Tshwete, called on Justice Benjamin Pickard to investigate maladministration in football.

The result was that then South African Football Association (Safa) president Solomon “Stix” Morewa had to step down following the findings.

It looks like Majola will be the main casualty of this latest probe into CSA’s affairs that was initiated by incumbent minister Fikile Mbalula.

Should this be the case, will it rid SA sport of its ills? Methinks not.

If we get rid of Majola, the problem will remain as another individual will be appointed as CEO and life will go on as if nothing happened.

What is needed is a structure to ensure sport is run in a way that focuses on the players, facilities and the likes. Had this been in place, we would not be seeing what is happening in cricket.

We would not have seen Safa and the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) bickering and ending up having to hold a tete a tete with Mbalula.

We would not hear the same Mbalula say: “Really the fight is about money. As the minister I spend time mediating greediness in sport. I want to spend time mediating transformation and development in sport.”

Remove greedy officials from sport and replace them with people who have love and interest of sport at heart.

People who will not spend time in boardrooms or get involved in media bickering and point-scoring.

People who will tackle problems without playing the man.

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