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August 29, 2013
Teams: South Africa
Former CSA chief executive Gerald Majola's Labour Court challenge against the disciplinary procedures which saw him suspended in October has been dismissed. Majola will also be required to carry the costs of the legal proceedings between himself and CSA which have dragged on since he was suspended in March last year.
CSA hopes this is the final chapter of a long-running saga which has been going on for the better part of three years. "It's time to move on," Haroon Lorgat, the new CSA chief, said. "The sooner we are able to put this matter to bed, the sooner cricket can move forward."
The Majola affair began when he and 39 other staff members were awarded 4.7 million rand in bonuses after the hosting of the IPL and Champions League in 2009. The money was not declared to CSA's board and was only discovered by their internal auditors.
Majola faced an internal inquiry, which cleared him of all wrongdoing, an external investigation conducted by auditing firm KPMG which discovered he may have contravened the Companies' Act four times and a ministerially convened commission, chaired by Judge Chris Nicholson, which recommended his suspension. In the process, CSA were also advised to restructure their board to include a significant independent component that could play a role in ensuring corporate governance.
Lorgat, who previously headed up the ICC, indicated he would be interested in the CSA job as long as the board was reconstituted in accordance with the guidelines stipulated by the Nicholson commission. He was appointed last month, after numerous delays on CSA's side during which they had two acting bosses.
As a personal friend of Majola's, Lorgat said he had had communication with his predecessor, in his own capacity, to try and find a solution to the legal claim Majola made on CSA. "I had personal interaction with him and tried to establish if there was a chance of a settlement and if there was, I would have proposed it to the board," Lorgat said.
But Majola was not receptive to that idea and instead chose to proceed with litigation. His case was based on questioning the legitimacy of Nicholson Commission, which his legal team believed was improperly formed. Now that this has been dismissed, Majola's association with CSA is believed to be over.
The only outstanding issue remains the actual bonus amounts which Lorgat confirmed have not been recovered from Majola or any of the other staff members. CSA have already said they will not seek to recuperate the money from their employees but Lorgat said the board may decide to launch a civil claim against Majola.
If president Chris Nenzani's statement is any indication, they will not go that route. "CSA is pleased this matter is over and we can now focus on the future," he said. Lorgat seems to feel the same way. "This is something I want to put behind me," he said. "We must acknowledge the mistakes of the past but we must also give credit to Gerald for what he did for cricket."
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondentFeeds: Firdose Moonda
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