Graeme Smith’s attorney hits back on “flawed” report from Cricket SA SJN: “some results are questionable” – archyde

  • Graeme Smith’s attorney David Becker has raised concerns about the process of the SJN hearings.
  • Smith was implicated in the report several times, but Becker said there were “procedural errors”.
  • Becker defended Smith’s appointment and his appointment to the Proteas coaching team.

David Becker, attorney for South African Director of Cricket (DOC) Graeme Smith, and attorneys for other respondents at the hearings have repulsed and named the Social Justice and Nation Building (SJN) report presented this week by Attorney Dumisa Ntsebeza “Faulty”.

The hearings, which investigated segregation, discrimination and lack of transformation in South African cricket, took place over six months earlier this year and saw testimony from current and former players, coaches and administrators of the game.

Now that the process is complete, Ntsebezas Report released on Wednesday was highly competitive with its results pointing to multiple incidents of discrimination, while also wiping out prominent South African cricket figures including Smith, current head coach Mark Boucher and former national captain AB de Villiers.

The report alleged procedural issues with the appointment of Smith and Boucher to their respective roles at CSA, while Smith was viewed as racially biased towards Enoch Nkwe in his appointment by Boucher as coach.

Ntsebeza also pointed to Smith’s refusal to work under former CEO Thabang Moroe as a sign of racial prejudice.

Boucher’s apology and reaction to the role he played in Paul Adams’ faced racism during his playing time was scolded in the report, while De Villiers was also criticized for Khaya Zondo’s non-selection during the 2015 tour of South Africa to India.

The report made no recommendations on Smith and Boucher, but the CSA Board will now look into it before deciding how to proceed.

In a statement released on Thursday by “lawyers for various respondents” in the hearings, Becker confirmed that the CSA had “serious concerns” about the process of the report.

“The SJN trial was undoubtedly an important process for South African cricket. However, CSA has to take into account a number of fundamental shortcomings in the Ombudsman’s process, which have been raised by several respondents, ”the statement said.

‘For example, how can you make sweeping and public statements about racial prejudice against certain people and, in the same breath, say that they are’ tentative ‘, as the Ombudsman did? How is CSA going to implement these findings when the Ombudsman has stated that he “cannot make definitive determinations in a case where the evidence of both the so-called victims and the alleged perpetrators has not been examined”?

“Why was the evidence not properly examined? The ombudsman had the opportunity to cross-examine the witnesses in accordance with the terms of reference and did not use this opportunity.

“It was his trial.”

All Smith, Boucher and De Villiers replied in writing to the SJN, but none was personally present to cross-examine.

Becker then pointed out a lack of due process in the hearings.

“Important questions need to be asked as to why certain respondents were not properly informed of the allegations made against them. Apparently, several people against whom racism was found were identified by the ombudsman, ”said Becker.

“If so, it is very grave and the results against them must ultimately be withdrawn or set aside.”

Becker denied the report’s claim that Smith’s stance on Moroe was an example of racial bias while defending Smith’s role in his own appointment and that of the coaching staff.

“In addition, some of the findings are quite questionable and without any basis,” said Becker.

For example, when he finds that Smith’s refusal to work under Moroe ‘shows his racial bias against the black leadership at CSA,’ the Ombudsman is simply ignoring the fact that Smith has recently been quite happy and successful under current CSA CEO Pholetsi Moseki worked. ” Year.

“Since his appointment in December 2019, he has also worked with three black CSA presidents.

“As for his appointment, Smith did not appoint himself. The evidence clearly shows that his appointment was endorsed by the selection panel and approved by the entire CSA Board of Directors, CSA President Chris Nenzani, CFO Pholetsi Moseki, Acting CEO, HR Head Chantal Moon, and Legal Officer & Company Secretary Welsh Gwaza.

“Important parts of the evidence are simply not covered in the report. For example, the Ombudsman notes that Smith did not explain in his evidence why he appointed Boucher. The reasons, however, are clearly stated by Smith and Mr. Nenzani in their affidavits submitted. “To the SJN.”

Becker also believes the report ignored comments from the players ‘association, the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA), which responded to allegations of discrimination against players.

“SACA submitted a 250-page filing detailing the allegations. Their evidence is largely ignored and barely mentioned in the report, ”Becker added.

“It will make you feel rightly offended.”

Becker then asked why the match-fixing saga of 2015 – colored players involved had hinted at racist bias in the investigation – was given so much airtime at the hearings, only to be dismissed by Ntsebeza as a “diversionary maneuver”.

“This came at an enormous cost for CSA and those surveyed. Surprisingly, there is no mention in the entire report of how these four gentlemen abused the SJN process, ”said Becker.

Becker urged CSA to “carefully examine” the procedural flaws in the report before taking action.

“The CSA has stated that it will examine the report objectively. You need to carefully weigh all of these process concerns and make a decision as to whether the results and recommendations can actually be implemented, ”he said.

“It’s just a shame that a very meaningful project with a noble purpose may be spoiled due to procedural errors.”

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