Kenyan cricket crisis deepens as court butts in

Published: Wednesday, January 19, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Nairobi:Kenya's cricket crisis escalated when the sport's ex-ruling board, sacked by the country's sports minister last week for mismanagement, won a court order preventing the government from interfering in its operations.

A Nairobi court issued a restraining order barring government action against the Kenya Cricket Association, pending a ruling in a civil suit soon to be filed by its members that aims to quash their dismissal.

The order from high court judge Melton Makhandia also prevents a government-appointed interim committee from taking over the KCA's work and offices in Nairobi's Ruaraka suburb.

The injunctions were sought by the sacked president of the KCA, Sharad Ghai, who claims sports minister Ochilo Ayacko exceeded his mandate and acted improperly when he fired the old board on Friday.

Ayacko accused the board of financial mismanagement, failing to resolve a long-standing feud with national team players and being too slow in drawing up a new constitution and named a caretaker panel to oversee the KCA until new elections are held in April.

But on Monday, Ghai told AFP he did not recognize Ayacko's decision and would contest it and, shortly thereafter, members of the interim board complained that they had been locked out of the KCA offices.

After Tuesday's court order, police were sent to the offices and instructed interim board members who had finally gained access to return home, officials said.

Meanwhile, KCA general manager Sammy Obingo, one of the few ex-board members to be included on the 11-strong interim committee, said he had been threatened with dismissal for siding with the new panel.

"They want to get rid of me," he said.

Read more about: news, nairobi, thatscricketcom, january 19
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