… Minister Ramson signals court order to have elections in keeping with Cricket Administration Act
FOLLOWING the restoration of the Cricket Administration Act last September, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Charles Ramson Jr, said he will not be engaging the current Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) on matters relating to the game, calling the body ‘illegitimate’.
Minister Ramson, addressing reporters at the Guyana National Stadium, was stern in his comment that his ministry, and by extension the Government of Guyana, “does not recognise the body that calls themselves the Guyana Cricket Board, as the legitimate body that is supposed to represent Cricket in Guyana”.
Under former Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr Frank Anthony (now Minister of Health), the Act was tabled in 2014 and sought to firstly make it legal for GCB to be established as a corporate body comprising the Demerara, Essequibo and Berbice cricket boards, all of which will also be made corporate entities.
Behind Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Charles Ramson, Government won an appeal against a High Court injunction at the Appellate Court, which now paves the way for the restoration of the Cricket Administration Act.
“Since the restoration of the Act, until there is an election where the persons who are elected to hold those positions in accordance with the Act;, until that occurs, the ministry is not engaging with a body that does not comply with the laws of Guyana,” Ramson stated.
The minister further pointed out, “that’s why, since the restoration of the Act, we have not engaged with the body that calls themselves the GCB and even though we have not done anything that would disallow them from carrying out activities, we are not engaging with them formally because we do not recognise them as the legitimate body representing cricket in Guyana on a National basis, until they are compliant with the Act.”
“There is a court decision that will come in a matter of a couple of days which will direct when those elections are held but until that occurs, we are not engaging any illegitimate body,” Ramson reaffirmed.
Meanwhile, Minister Ramson, an Attorney-at-Law by profession, reiterated that as Minister of Sport, he intends to work with all stakeholders of the ‘Gentleman’s Game’, in an effort to preserve the rich history of Cricket in Guyana, and safeguard the future of the sport.
Ramson had stated that it is not for him to “cherry-pick individuals who would represent Guyana’s interest, it is the process that is important to me. I’ve said that to all of the stakeholders and that is what I intend to stick by.”
Based on the Act, the first elections of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) by law should be called by the Minister of Sport in consultation with the West Indies Cricket Board (now Cricket West Indies).
A section of the Act also addressed the issue of phantom voting for the election of persons for administrative positions and at the same time will give limited power to the Minister of Sport. The role of the minister under the legislation will be only to appoint the Ombudsman and his role ceases.
The Act, as a previous article in Chronicle Sport had pointed out, also provides for better financial accountability with the cricket board being required to present timely audited financial reports to the National Assembly, as well as the National Sports Commission (NSC).