Govender’s disciplinary hearing is set for January 28. © Getty
CSA announced its third interim chief executive in just over a year on Monday (December 14th) when Pholetsi Moseki was installed after the dismissal of Kugandrie Govender on charges of misconduct. Govender’s disciplinary hearing is set for January 28.
She is the second main CSA figure, after corporate secretary Welsh Gwaza, removed from an interim board, appointed on 17 November after government intervention in response to more than three years of mismanagement in the game.
The board challenged two of its own members on Thursday, leaving little doubt that it is taking its mandate seriously to eradicate the rot that has plagued and dominated financial cricket in South Africa. But the board will have to remember its responsibility to maintain stability at CSA, which has suffered eleven blows to its credibility since Thabang Moroe was appointed interim prime minister in September 2017.
Govender joined CSA as chief commercial officer in April 2019 and became its first female interim prime minister on August 19 this year after Jacques Faul resigned from the post. Faul embarked after Moroe’s dismissal as the appointed chief executive in December.
An edition of the interim board summarized the allegations against Govender as “the role she played in the cancellation of media accreditation by some journalists in December 2019,” various violations of the provisions of the Company Act as a prescribed CSA employee, ”and “The role she played in the dismissal of Mr Clive Eksteen, which CSA has now acknowledged (under an agreement with Mr Eksteen) was an unfair dismissal”.
Govender’s Linkedin entry says that, as a chief business officer, she is “responsible for all business matters; overseeing all CSA communications and media, sponsorship services, digital media and marketing”. So the dollars for five cricket journalists revoked without explanation could be said to stop with her. The decision to take action against the journalists was part of the justification used to fire Moroe in August.
In October, Govender told a meeting attended by South African players that she thought the flood of negative reports about CSA related to the organization had diminished the free donations it gives to journalists, and that reporters may be sad about not secure jobs at CSA.
Govender came to CSA after a career of more than 21 years as a salesperson and marketer, mostly in the media industry. Asked if she would dispute the allegations at her hearing, she did not respond.
Eksteen was suspended as a sponsor and seller of CSA in October last year on charges that he was partly responsible for late payment to the players, through the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA), for the use of their rights to promote the Mzansi Super League. . An investigation found Moroe and Naasei Appiah, who was fired as chief operating officer on August 16, were at fault and that Eksteen was in fact trying to resolve the situation. SACA agreed. CSA also accused Eksteen of selling sponsorship less than approved by its executive. He contradicted that he had informed his superior, Govender, of the offer before it was accepted. On June 14, Eksteen was found guilty of “serious sins” and fired. He sued for unfair dismissal, and won his case on December 4.
Moseki, an accountant who has worked in banking, arms and private securities industries, has been CSA’s chief commercial officer since July 2019. He will not be expected to fulfill his new responsibilities without assistance. “Ensuring that CSA remains fully operational during this time, the interim board has arranged for the appointment of a capable person from an audit firm to stand in the gap until early January 2021,” the Monday statement said.
While this will reassure cricketers in South Africa that at least one sensible pair of ears and eyes will be among the more expensive suits at CSA, it also means the board believes cricket management in South Africa has exhausted that essential quality.