CSA announces formal inquiries into conduct of Smith and Boucher

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Cricket South African (CSA) on Monday announced “formal inquiries” into the conduct of former cricketers, Graeme Smith and Mark Boucher, after the Social Justice and Nation Building (SJN) submitted its report on allegations of discrimination and racism in the country’s cricketing structure.

“The formal inquiries will take place early in the new year. They will include formal inquiries into the conduct of Graeme Smith, the CSA Director of Cricket, and Mark Boucher, the coach of the Proteas men’s team. The Ombudsman’s Report (SJN) included findings that Smith and Boucher had acted in a prejudicial or discriminatory manner,” CSA said in statement on Monday.

During the course of the inquiry, the two legendary cricketers will continue to carry out their duties, CSA said.

“The formal inquiries will be conducted by independent legal professionals. Further details with regards to the inquiries will be announced in due course. Smith and Boucher remain in their positions and will continue to carry out their duties during the India tour.”

The Ombudsman’s SJN Report has made several “tentative findings” regarding allegations of discrimination and racism in South African cricket. However, since it is “not in a position to make definite findings”, it has recommended that a further process be undertaken by CSA.

CSA will also institute formal enquiries into the conduct of its employees, suppliers or contractors implicated by the SJN report.

“The (CSA) Board has done so mindful of its duty to treat allegations of racism or discrimination with the utmost seriousness and in a manner that ensures fairness and due process in terms of South Africa’s labour legislation and the Constitution,” the CSA statement said.

“CSA respects the SJN process and we are engaging with the report in detail and holistically. We have taken careful cognisance of the recommendation of the Ombudsman, that in appropriate cases, a further process should be instituted to test the evidence and submissions made, and we have decided that this is indeed the appropriate route to follow,” said CSA Board chairperson, Lawson Naidoo.

“We hope this will give implicated parties a fair opportunity to be heard so that finality can be achieved, and any final findings can then be acted on,” he said.

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