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Garner slams CARICOM dissolution proposal

Published:Sunday | April 10, 2016 | 4:00 AM
Joel Garner

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC):

Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) president Joel Garner has hit out at the CARICOM-commissioned Governance Panel's controversial recommendation that the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) be dissolved.

Garner, the legendary former West Indies fast bowler and a current WICB director, questioned the practicality of the proposed move, contending that all the boards which comprised the regional governing body were legitimate legal entities and, therefore, they could not be simply struck down.

"My questions are: Is the BCA, which was constituted by an act of Parliament in 1933, an illegal entity and my selection as president of the BCA an illegal act?" Garner queried, while speaking at the BCA's quarterly meeting here Thursday.

"So I have to ask the question: is the GCB (Guyana Cricket Board) an illegal entity? Is the Jamaica Cricket (Association) an illegal entity? Is the Leeward Islands Cricket Association an illegal entity? Is the Windward Islands Cricket Board an illegal entity? Is the TTCB (Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board) an illegal entity?"

He continued: "If they are so, they have all been established in countries in which the prime ministers are making noise and they have to tell the public of the region if these entities are illegal, how they were able to remain vibrant for so long."

In proposing the dissolution of the WICB, the Governance Panel, headed by UWI Cave Hill Principal Eudine Barriteau, also recommended the appointment of an interim board, "whose structure and composition will be radically different from the now proven, obsolete governance framework".

 

UNNECESSARY DEMAND

 

While CARICOM heads have embraced the recommendation and resolved to ensure its implementation, the WICB, headed by controversial president Dave Cameron, has rejected it as an "unnecessary and intrusive demand".

The board also slammed the report as "limited in scope", arguing that the panel's investigations had "triggered findings and recommendations ... which are not supported by the facts".

"The dissolution of the board is simply not a viable, legal or practical option and carries a major financial risk, which the panel either ignored or was unaware of," the WICB told CARICOM in a written response earlier this year.

Last month, Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley said CARICOM was soliciting advice on the "legal position" of West Indies cricket.