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Ombudsman Peters refutes possibility of impending Upper Corentyne, West Berbice elections

- says polls cannot be staged outside Cricket Administration Act

Following the publication of notices for the staging of elections for the Upper Corentyne Cricket Association (UCCA) and West Berbice Cricket Association (WBCA), respectively, Cricket Ombudsman Malcolm Peters has declared that neither election can be conducted once it’s not in accordance with the Cricket Administration Act of 2014.

This was disclosed by an official message from the office of the Cricket Ombudsman yesterday. According to the correspondence, which was signed by Peters, “It was brought to my attention that person or persons unknown have issued two notices that have been published in the Kaiteur Newspaper of December 5, 2023, regarding the elections of the Upper Corentyne Cricket Association (UCCA) and the West Berbice Cricket Association (WBCA). In the case of the Upper Corentyne Cricket Association, it was stated that the election will be held on December 14, 2023, at the Skeldon Community Centre.”

The release further stated, “Please note that the information set out in this publication is false. The constitution of UCCA,

Buxton United Football Club; Den Amstel Football Club; Fruta Conquerors Football Club; Guyana Defence Force Football Club (GDF); Milerock Football Club; and Victoria Kings Football Club.”

Johnson further disclosed, “It is noteworthy that the Guyana Police Force was established on July 1, 1839, by the Constitution of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana and is guided by the Police Act, Chapter 16:01. As a disciplinary organisation, the Commissioner of Police reserves and exercises the right to appoint the President, who appoints the other officers for the various sporting disciplines, including football, with the approval of the Force’s Executive Leadership Team. This precedent has continued over the years with successive commissioners, without any objection from any governing body, for the various sports, including the Guyana Football Federation Executive Body. This abrupt attempt to challenge the Commissioner’s authority to appoint decision-making bodies to manage the various sporting disciplines is to challenge the Constitutional Office of the Commissioner of Police.”

He further revealed that the GFF has, in the past, contravened which forms part of the Guyana Cricket Association Act #14 of 2014, states that elections for UCCA shall be held in the second week of January. I have since been notified by the UCCA that they would be in full compliance with the provision. Hence, this election would be held in January 2024.”

According to the release, the WBCA has not had a functioning executive committee since 2021, and Mr. Dilchand, who was alleged to have conducted a special meeting that was attended by several clubs allegedly under the banner of the entity, does not have the authority to stage a meeting on behalf of the WBCA.

Peters explained, “As it relates to WBCA, this association has been without an executive body since 2021. The very publication alleged that Mr. Joel Dilchand had conducted a special meeting at Cotton Tree Ground, at which several clubs purportedly affiliated with WBCA were present. its own constitution by failing to notify the club of the 2022 General Congress, and that the Electoral Committee has also breached the sport’s constitution by failing to disclose the requisite eligibility criteria.

Johnson explained, “It is noteworthy that the Guyana Football Federation contravened Article 14.1(b) of the Guyana Football Federation Statutes when it failed to notify and invite the Police FC and Elite Club to the General It was also alleged that those clubs authorised Mr. Dilchand to call a meeting on December 10, 2023, for the purpose of holding an election. It must be made clear that Mr. Dilchand has no authority to summon a meeting or call an election on behalf of WBCA.” According to the article, the clubs that were presented were Shieldstown Sports Club, D Edwards Sports Club, #5 Modderlust, Woodley Park Young Strikers, Cotton Tree Die Hard, Bath Sports Club, Achievers Youth and Sports Club, Hope Town United, Bush Lot United, Bush Lot Rising Stars Rainbow Generation, and Paradise Challengers. Blairmont Community Centre attended as an observer.

Peters noted that the listed clubs do not correspond to the official register of teams issued by the regional governing authority, the Berbice Cricket Board, adding, “I have received several calls from persons indicating that their clubs have been omitted

Congress 2022. Alarmingly, the Electoral Committee of the Federation has neglected to publish the full list of eligibility criteria, thus breaching Article 7.3 of the Electoral Code of the Guyana Football Federation with impunity. In an effort to continue the development of football in Guyana, the Executive Body of Police FC and the Commissioner of Police are looking forward to a swift and amicable solution to the aforementioned issues.” from the list published. It is a requirement by law that the ombudsman verify the register of clubs before holding any elections. My office is in the process of this verification.”

Peters further stated that notices will be issued and that clubs affiliated with the WBCA will be notified when the verification process is completed, adding that advice will be provided as to when elections can be staged in accordance with the Guyana Cricket Administration Act 2014.

Peters, who was a former President of the Berbice Cricket Board and former Vice President of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB), was appointed to his post in June 2021 by the Guyana Cricket Board. He replaced Attorney-at-Law Kamal Ramkarran, who was appointed by Minister of Culture, Youth, and Sport Charles Ramson Jr. as stipulated by the Cricket Administration Act.

The role of the Cricket Ombudsman, as outlined in the Cricket Administration Act, is to verify the Register of Clubs and perform the functions of Returning Officer for the elections of the membership of the GCB.

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