By Sean Devers
FORMER Guyana Captain and West Indies off-spinning all-rounder, Roger Harper wants Parliament to intervene in what he terms ‘trampling’ on Guyana Cricket Act.
The 59-year-old Harper, who served as West Indies Coach and Chairman of the Regional Selectors, is peeved with the manner in which the Demerara Cricket Board (DCB) is making a deliberate attempt to ‘throw a bad light’ on the GCA and making decisions contrary to the Guyana Cricket Act.
“The Guyana Cricket Act states that the GCB should hold elections every two years but contrary to the Cricket Act the current GCB executives sought the opportunity, without having one elections since the installation of the Cricket Board under the Cricket Act, to extend the term of office from two years to four years.
“In my opinion it seems like the work of parliament is a joke, because so much time, money and energy were spent put into coming up with the Cricket Act which at the time was supposed to guide and run our cricket and solve all of the conflicts,” said Harper, who played 25 Tests and 105 ODIs in an International career that lasted from 1983 to 1996.
“The body that was elected under that Act, now changes the term from two to four years. We got to be joking! And, nothing has been said about it. I don’t know if Parliament is aware of it.”
Harper further pointed out that “these things have been done in a very underhanded way and in a sneaky manner…again in contrary to the Guyana Cricket Act.”
Harper, who captured 567 wickets and made 10 tons from 200 First-Class games, explained that Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) president Hilbert Foster, who was elected as the Vice-President of the GCB with the responsibility for Cricket Development, was also chosen as a Director of CWI.
“The Act specifically states that either the Chairman of the Cricket Development Committee of the GCB or the Chairman of the Senior Selection Committee of the GCB should be a representative on the CWI.
“Mr Foster was removed as Director and Mr Seeram who is the Chairman of Selectors was not the one that replaced him.
“Instead, the recently elected Essequibo Cricket Board (ECB) president was chosen. Now, all of that is contrary to Cricket Act…but again…you know… you don’t hear anything… Parliament not asking any questions… nobody is” lamented the DCC President.
According to Harper, at the recently concluded DCB Elections, the Ombudsman, quoted the Act which give him the authority to conduct the elections but then trampled on the same Act by insisting against objections that votes should be done by show of hands.
“This was done for a specific purpose, they wanted to see who was voting for who. There is evidence of a member of the GCA, who serves on the GCB who was victimised for how he voted at the DCB Elections.
“A lot of things have changed, the Act is there but a lot of things have been done contrary to the Act and decisions that are made” disclosed Harper, rated as one of best fielders in International Cricket.
The GCA Vice-President feels the Media should start asking some serious questions.
“What is the reason for the Act…what gives the GCB the authority to do these things and why it is being done in the first place?”
On the issue of GCA members not functioning in their positions, Harper said he was elected as the first Vice-President of the DCB and did not know who represented the DCB at the GCB meetings since it was never discussed.
“You can peruse all of the DCB’s minutes, it’s not in there so we don’t know how they were chosen” Harper revealed.
“My focus is on helping to produce cricketers who participate in GCA’s tournaments who can play at the highest level.”
“Over the years, Georgetown has had most of the best players in Demerara while the other areas under the DCB have struggled. Very little is being done to improve the game in those areas” Harper concluded.
GCA, despite being the most successful association under the DCB, does not have any executives on the DCB.