Bissoon DCB Withdraws Court Case

Date Published: 
Kaieteur News
Sean Devers

The Bissoon Singh led-Demerara Cricket Board (DCB) yesterday withdrew their court case against the Raj Singh-led DCB which was scheduled to be heard by the Honorable Judge Rishi Singh in the Full Court.

Raj Singh

A press release by the Raj Singh faction claims that yesterday’s hearing was fixed to determine the legitimate body that will represent the DCB for the next 2 years.

“The Bissoondyal Singh-faction, which had requested a week’s leave to file their response, has now filed a withdrawal and discontinuance of their injunction matter this (yesterday) morning before the Honorable Judge, Rishi Persaud.

This has effectively cleared the way for the duly elected Executive body headed by Mr. Raj Singh to proceed with the administration of the affairs of the DCB” the Raj Singh-DCB release stated.

Bissoon Singh told Kaieteur News yesterday that his side withdrew their case because he felt that it made no sense for the Court matter to be dragged along especially since the case was presented before the January 22 elections, which has now been completed.

One of the issues of contention was the status of Rovin Stanly of the Raj Singh’s faction on the previous DCB and two separate elections were held at venues on the East Coast and West Demerara respectively, resulting in Bissoon Singh and his unrelated namesake Raj being elected as Presidents for separate DCB’s.

While Raj Singh, who has the support of West Demerara, East Bank and a few clubs in Georgetown, is proclaiming victory because of Bissoon Singh’s withdrawal, Bissoon, who has the support of the East Coast and the majority of Georgetown clubs, is also claiming that his faction is the ‘real’ Demerara Board with neither side backing down and going ahead with their Board’s related work.

The Bissoon Singh side has already named their sub committees while the other side was scheduled to do so last evening since they claimed they were waiting on yesterday’s Court hearing before doing so.

Judge Persaud told Kaieteur Sport last evening that he was instructed by correspondence from Bissoon Singh’s attorney Anil Nandalall who was present in Court yesterday that his client was withdrawing the case in its entirety. He confirmed that yesterday’s hearing would have dealt with, among other things, the Rovin Stanly issue.

Judge Persaud informed that Bissoon Singh’s decision means that the dispute was no longer an issue for the Court. The learned Judge added that what transpired yesterday in Court did not determine which one of the two feuding factions was the legal body to govern cricket in Demerara.

Raj Singh opined that because his faction did everything according to the Chief Justice’s order that an executive meeting be held they can now claim to be the legally constituted DCB.

“This withdrawal has the effect of legalizing the resolution that was read, adopted and approved by a majority vote of 7 Executives to zero with 6 abstentions. That resolution had fixed the AGM to be held at Wales Community Centre, WBD on January 22nd 2011 at 14:00hrs.

The AGM at Wales was held as scheduled in accordance with the resolution adopted at the January 17th meeting,” the Raj Singh faction claims.

Bissoon Singh however contends that since yesterday’s court hearing was not to decide which of the two boards was the ‘right’ one but to look at other issues which are now irrelevant because both boards have already been set up, he is the only legal DCB and has proceeded with preparing for the restart of the Demerara cricket season.

With both factions claiming to be the official DCB and both claiming that they are willing to include members of the area Associations that are not a part of their Boards in their various committees, it’s now back to Square-one’ in deciding which is the official Board since there cannot be two DCBs in the one county.

“It is widely believed that the application for a week’s leave was just a delay mechanism by this grouping as they really do not have an appropriate response to that filed by our Attorney, Sanjeev Datadin.

It is instructive to note that they took an entire week to file a simple notice of discontinuance and withdrawal when Mr. Datadin filed his response to their injunction (to stop the previous Secretary from convening an Executive Committee meeting without the approval and instructions of the previous President, Bissoondyal Singh) within 2 days of service of their injunction,” the Raj Singh DCB said yesterday.

“This injunction, which was granted last Tuesday, has effectively been spent and was considered to be of no effect as the Secretary had never convened any meeting nor had any intention of convening any meeting but merely summoned meetings. They had applied using several mis-leading issues as the bases of the Order; among them was their attempt to debar a legally elected Executive member, Mr. Rovin Stanley, from participating in the Executive Committee meeting of January 17, 2011,” the Raj Singh faction continued.

“The Executive Committee of the DCB will now hold its 1st Statutory Meeting this afternoon at the Everest Cricket Club Pavilion to plan its activities for the immediate, short and long term future including naming the various sub committees for the effective administration of cricket in Demerara.

Representatives from the Georgetown and East Coast Demerara Area Associations would be invited to join the Executive Committee in accordance with our constitution. The current Executive Committee of the DCB strongly denounces the misleading and confusing attempts of the Bissoondyal Singh grouping in their numerous pronouncements in the media and would like to call on all cricket-minded persons to join with us in developing cricket in Demerara and Guyana,” PRO for the Raj Singh faction, Rohan Sarjoo disclosed yesterday evening.

Several cricket pundits and legal minds feel the matter is now in the hands of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) to make a decision on which DCB to recognise, especially with the GCB elections (which have been postponed from January 30) fast approaching. Some feel that if the GCB cannot successfully solve the problem then the Government, through its Sports Ministry or the National Sports Commission should also intervene.

The Bissoon Singh faction had met with Sports Minister Dr. Frank Anthony at his office one day before their Court case was scheduled to be heard and Bissoon Singh explained that his board was invited to the meeting by the Minister.

Efforts to talk with Nandalall, Attorney for the Bissoon Singh faction, proved futile yesterday since this newspaper was informed that the Lawyer was attending Parliament but Nandalall has called a press conference for this morning at his city office to deal with the matter and the executives of the Bissoon Singh faction is also expected to be present to answer questions.