Cricket South Africa (CSA) might’ve dodged a bullet by tentatively reassuring one major sponsor in Standard Bank, but another, the Willowton Group, on Thursday explicitly called for heads to roll at the federation.
In an open letter, the firm, best known for its Sunfoil brand of products, noted its “grave concern over the state of affairs that have transpired within Cricket South Africa over recent months” and list a host of demands in return for its continued association with the governing body.
Most prominently, it calls for the “immediate resignation” of CEO Thabang Moroe as well as that of CSA president, Chris Nenzani.
The departure of Moroe is actually highlighted in the correspondence with a bold font, suggesting the 37-year-old’s fate is the most important consideration for the organisation
Furthermore, Willowton wants the three senior officials suspended for “dereliction of duties” with regards to Mzansi Super League player image rights payments – Corrie van Zyl, Naasei Appiah and Clive Eksteen – reinstated
Other demands include the reappointment of independent directors Shirley Zinn and Iqbal Khan, who both quit this week, as well as an independent audit into CSA’s affairs.
“During our (tenure) as headline sponsor to the international Test series and 4-day domestic series, we valued the relationships that were created with past and current players, that were both active in the game and administration. Their passion for the game of cricket and good governance created an environment that allowed the national team and fellow South Africans to focus on the game out on the pitch and not the side games that are so prevalent today,” Willowton wrote.
“These same passionate individuals have been cast out of the organisation and suspended without real cause or substantiation.”
The company cites all the issues of the past few months that other stakeholders have noted with concern too.
“We wish to call CSA to immediate order and for the “decision making” individuals within the organisation to strongly consider whether they are best suited to their positions.”
Willowton’s stance is hugely ironic from a CSA perspective as the company was one of few to take the plunge and support the federation after 2010’s IPL bonus scandal under the leadership of Gerald Majola, a saga that eventually led to a commission of inquiry being formed.