By Sam Sooppersaud
On the evening of Sunday, October 16, 2011, a teleconference was held by a group of impassioned USA cricket stakeholders, including several elected cricket officials, to address the problems encountered with the governance of the leading cricket body in the United States.
The idea of a teleconference was initiated by Susheel Kumar and Hemant Buch, two gentlemen among many, who are working feverishly to bring about changes in the way the USACA Board and its president are handling the affairs of the organization. More and more decisions are coming from that body that is inconsistent with the Constitution of the organization. Moreover, the stakeholders are disgusted that president Gladstone Dainty is making decisions unilaterally, decisions that seriously affect the relationship among members of the board and the cricket stakeholders.
On Saturday, October 22, 2011, there is a planned face to face meeting of the USACA Board – the first since 2010 – and it is expected that a majority members of the Board, if not all, plan to attend. It is still left to be seen, whether all will be allowed their constitutional right to sit in at the meeting. In the last face-to-face meeting the West Coast Region representative was denied the right to fully participate in the meeting.
As was pointed out at the outset of the teleconference, the purpose of the “get together” was not to throw stones at anyone. It would be a positive conference, with no one seeking vengeance over anyone. With this in mind the conference began. The main reason for the conference was to ascertain how the stakeholders feel concerning the present governance of USACA, and to elicit information that will help the leaders of the teleconference to draft a proposal to be endorsed by the league presidents, to request what they want to see done by the Board. The proposal is expected to be submitted to the meeting this Saturday.
Among the matters touched and discussed were the Compliance Review process, information on the USACA website that is incomplete and incorrect, the disunity among the Board members, the unilateral manner in which the president is making important decisions, the suspension of Secretary Aaron, the non-recognition of Tony Gilkes as the Representative of the North East region, the refusal of the president to recognize Golam Sayeed as an elected Board member, the refusal of Mr. Dainty to release the results of the Atlantic Region elections, and several other problems confronting the development of cricket in this country. One president even made it known that he is calling on his fellow presidents to pass a no-confidence motion on president Dainty’s governance of USACA.
There were lengthy and impassioned discussions on all the topics raised by the various participants. No one sought the making and passing of motions. It was a time to make the feelings of the participants known, which would help to draft a paper to be submitted to the Board meeting letting them know how the cricket stakeholders feel about what’s going on, and what they would like see done. At the urging of the participants, the three “marked” Board members stated that they intend to attend the board meeting.
Basically, it was agreed that the following matters would be listed on the draft to be submitted to the Board meeting: that Secretary Aaron’s “suspension” be nullified and he is reinstated, that Dainty authorize the release of the results of the Atlantic Region elections, that board members, John Aaron and Tony Giles (NER) be admitted to the meeting, and newly elected representative Golam Sayeed be recognized and also allowed to sit in at the meeting.
The assessment of USACA by one league president painted a bleak picture of our top cricket body. This is what he had to say: USACA is a closed-door society, an Old Boys’ Club, it has no credibility, and it is getting worse. He continued by saying that the league presidents are doing all the work, and should take responsibilities and make changes that will benefits cricket. “We must put people who would represent us”, he concluded.
The teleconference participants agreed that there must be general elections by November 30th, as dictated by the USACA Constitution. Further there was overwhelming support for the Compliance Review process, the idea being that only eligible leagues would be allowed to vote in the general elections.
Personally, I feel it was a constructive conference, because it touched on the salient problems affecting our cricket, the problems that must be fixed immediately if cricket is to be moved to a higher level.
Readers should note that I am reporting, to the best of my knowledge, what took place in the teleconference. I do not represent the views of any website, neither do I speak on behalf of any owners of any websites.
The views expressed here are those of the contributor, and do not necessarily reflect those of www.newyorkcricket.com