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Senior CSA officials suspended

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CSA did not name the officials, but it is understood that it is chief financial officer, Naasei Appiah, acting director of cricket, Corrie van Zyl, and head of sales and sponsorships Clive Eksteen.

THABANG Moroe could soon be sitting alone on his throne at the head of Cricket South Africa (CSA) after three senior officials were suspended yesterday.

The embattled chief executive faces a fresh crisis within his organisation after CSA confirmed a pending inquiry into alleged dereliction of duty over the non-payment of commercial rights fees during last year’s Mzansi Super League.

CSA did not name the officials, but it is understood that it is chief financial officer, Naasei Appiah, acting director of cricket, Corrie van Zyl, and head of sales and sponsorships Clive Eksteen.

Appiah’s suspension is particularly surprising considering his previous close relationship with Moroe, although it seems they too have now fallen out, with CSA stating that their actions are “in line with the effort of ensuring that the principle of accountability is applied equally, fairly and without fear or favour throughout the organisation”.

Moroe added: “CSA wants to reassure all cricket fans and all cricket stakeholders that our organisation and indeed our staff adhere to the highest ethical standards in all our dealings, and that consistency and accountability remains uppermost in all our processes and procedures.

“It is our expectation that all our staff members, including third-party stakeholders who are associated with the CSA brand should protect the reputation of CSA and the sport of cricket at all times.”

The suspensions come just 10 days before the start of the Mzansi Super League with CSA’s communications and marketing team currently undertaking a nationwide trophy road show. Only this week the trophy was on display in Cape Town’s mayoral office.

Deadlocked

Although Proteas and Cape Town Blitz fast bowler Dale Steyn was not present at the mayoral function, he did attend an earlier media engagement on a morning television breakfast show along with JP Duminy, who will be playing for the Paarl Rocks this year.

Independent Media can confirm that this was only possible after the South African Cricketers’ Association (Saca) and CSA recently reached an agreement.

They were previously deadlocked after Saca chief executive Tony Irish, claimed just last week that CSA still owed Saca R2.5 million dating back to a commercial agreement around player rights that was signed in November 2018.

Moroe stated that all monies owing to Saca will be paid immediately.

“While CSA regrets this unfortunate situation, as an organisation that promotes good governance and excellence in performance, we are pleased to report that, once uncovered, CSA successfully and quickly addressed this situation with Saca,” Moroe said.

“In this regard an agreement was (reached) wherein all fees due to players will be transferred to Saca with immediate effect and through this mutual agreement, CSA and Saca have averted all potential interruptions to the game of cricket.

“CSA assures the players, our stakeholders and all cricket fans at large that any kind of lapse in its processes which adversely impacts the game of cricket will be addressed accordingly.”

Furthermore, the suspension of both Eksteen, who played seven Tests and six one-day international, and Van Zyl – two ODIs and is a former Proteas coach – leaves the organisation bereft of anyone having played or coached international cricket at a time when the national team have just returned from one of their heaviest Test series defeats since readmission.