FILE - Transformation ombudsman Adv. Dumisa Ntsebeza. Photo: YouTube Screen grab
FILE - Transformation ombudsman Adv. Dumisa Ntsebeza. Photo: YouTube Screen grab

Provincial admin havoc curtailed development and transformation, SJN hears

By Stuart Hess Time of article published Oct 19, 2021

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Johannesburg – The administrative mayhem that overwhelmed Cricket SA in the last few years also helped mask similar havoc and bitter in-fighting in the provinces as the Social Justice and Nation Building hearings have heard in the last few days.

The Easterns Cricket Union has been under scrutiny on Monday and then Tuesday morning, with senior officials including suspended CEO Mpho Seopa and the union’s current president Thato Moagi revealing just how the differences between those in the board-room negatively impacted on development and transformation in the Ekurhuleni region.

Previous testimony provided to the transformation ombud Adv. Dumisa Ntsebeza had included pictures of dreadful facilities where youngsters were playing or training especially in townships in the region. Officials recognised that as unacceptable, but even in doing so, disputes about how money – including funds from the Lottery – that was supposed to be spent on the grounds or training facilities in previously disadvantaged areas, were either not spent, or erroneously spent.

The union has been the subject of two reports by retired high court Judge Bernard Ngoepe, something Ntsebeza cited as part of concerns he had about how his final report, which will be submitted to the Cricket SA Board of Directors, will be handled.

Easterns officials on both sides of the divide have requested further investigations into the chaos, there with Board member Adrian Langsberg teeling the SJN on Tuesday an Ombuds office should be set up within CSA to ensure that provinces are run properly.

Moagi, launched a stunning attack on Seopa at the end of his testimony, describing the former CEO as incompetent. “People of colour should not come here and say how they are being deemed or how they are being treated, where they are the ones doing the wrong stuff. We must keep each other honest. (Seopa) is an embarrassment to black administration and future CEOs,” said Moagi.

Moagi explained that he was happy to take questions, but Ntsebeza chose not to ask any.

Instead, for the second time on Tuesday and the third time since the hearings resumed the previous day, Ntsebeza expressed concern about whether Cricket SA would implement his recommendations.

Describing it as a “trend,” Ntsebeza explained that inquiries conducted by High court judges including Ngoepe, Chris Nicholson and Pius Langa – who investigated in-fighting at Gauteng’s administration more than a decade ago – had either been ignored or only half-heartedly implemented by various administrators.

“I’ve been asked several times, ‘what do you think you are going to bring which is going to be new and different or which will achieve the results that were suggested by others long before you arrived on the scene – Ngoepe, Langa, Nicholson, very reputable legal minds,” Ntsebeza asked?

“It worries me that in a year’s time we will be looking at SJN and say, ‘was it worth it?’ How can unions assist in the implementation processes of whatever recommendations are accepted. I am quite desirous that something concrete must come out of this process. I will emphasise that with the Board (of CSA). When we write our final report, that should be one of the themes that we should address. It is something that comes from us; there was a Langa, a Ngoepe and Nicholson and all of them were addressing more or less the same issue.”

“We can’t do the same thing over and over again and still hope to get a different result. It just doesn’t make sense,” said Ntsebeza.

The hearings continue on Wednesday.

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