Misappropriation Of DCB Funds

Date Published: 
Guyana Chronicle
Chronicle Staff

…two associations still to be paid after two years

LESS than 24 hours has passed and the credibility of the Bissoondyal-Singh-run Demerara Cricket Board (DCB) is being placed under the microscope, this time by some members of the executive who are questioning the misappropriation of the funds allocated to the board. (Bissoondyal) Singh himself is being accused of withholding payments from two associated members of the DCB, namely East Bank Demerara Cricket Association (EBDCA) and the West Demerara Cricket Association (WDCA), with both associated members calling this an act of frustration.

These payments are for expenses incurred for competitions run off in 2009 while it must be noted that both the East Coast Demerara Cricket Association (ECDCA) of which Singh is the president and the Roger-Harper-led Georgetown Cricket Association (GCA) have been paid several months ago.

It should also be noted that these payments are being withheld even though they have been discussed and approved for payment at the Executive level as per Minutes of  the  May 2010 statutory meeting of the DCB, where the DCB’s treasurer had indicated that he was just awaiting the cheque books to issue payments. Shortly after this meeting, the Treasurer was unfortunately hospitalised.

On October 1st, president of the EBDCA Rohan Sarjoo was given an unsigned cheque for monies owed to him by the DCB, having used his funds to run tournaments under the auspices of the EBDCA. The President has consistently approved payments to the GCA & ECDCA very promptly (and in some cases even before a game) but has sought to frustrate the administration of those associations perceived to be against him, namely the EBDCA and WDCA.

The concerned executives are also questioning the withdrawal of cash monies from the DCB’s coffers by (Bissoondyal) Singh, his treasurer and assistant secretary, who used same to pay clubs from their areas and other organizations using one cheque which was in contradiction to the accounting system of the DCB that are in place.

Some executive members have demanded in the past that an Administrator be appointed, a post that is being paid for by the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) who, according to one executive, pays $25,000 a month for this post which is yet to be put in place.

In addition, (Bissoondyal) Singh and his cohorts at the GCB level have been trying to undermine and fragment cricket administration in the East Bank area and have been using the GCB’s Cricket Development Committee to lend credence to their actions.

According to a press release, (Bissoondyal) Singh had attempted to present the Minutes of a meeting held in Linden to the DCB’s Executive meeting in May of this year, but that document was duly thrown out at that meeting as there was no mandate from the DCB for the Board to intervene in the affairs of East Bank or even Linden’s cricket administration.

If this group is truly interested in developing cricket in Demerara and Guyana, then there are many other areas such as grounds, coaching, gears, development programs, etc, that they should be concentrating on, rather than on overseeing elections. Conducting elections cannot be seen as a Cricket Development matter but can only be seen as part of an overall scheme to grab power through the machinations and gerrymandering of geographical borders and constitutions by this misguided few.

According to one of the concerned officials, (Bissoondyal) Singh believes the DCB’s funds are his personal piggy bank, hence accountability of same has been thrown aside and he is calling on the president to pay the outstanding monies owed to both the WDCA and the EBDCA, including funds for the 2008 and 2009 Hand-in-Hand tournaments.

Apart from the monies owed to the two associated members, the Hand-in-Hand umpires' fees for West Demerara are yet to be paid for 2008 and 2009, even though an Executive Committee meeting mandated the president to do so. These documents were authenticated by the Competition Chairmen of both the DCB and West Demerara, after I personally objected to some of the payments since members of the WDCUA had not participated in all of the matches,” stated the official who chose to remain anonymous.

He added; “The list was subsequently purged and resubmitted after the DCB treasurer said he had misplaced the 2008 claims, while the DCB president claimed at that time that no cheques were available. Yet I am hearing that a large amount of money was withdrawn without the Executive Committee's consent. How these funds would be spent only the President can answer.

Also, I have been reliably informed that most of it would be used for matches and events intended to enhance his quest for the post of president of the GCB, as the present president Chetram Singh has already indicated he is not willing to do the job for another term, due to his health.

Certainly, trouble is brewing within the DCB, as the concerned executives asked for a special OGM so the above mentioned matters amongst others can be discussed. Earlier this year, a High Court injunction prevented some of the executives from removing (Bissoondyal) Singh and his cohorts from their executive positions within the DCB and according to one of the concerned executives, (Bissoondyal) Singh used DCB funds to hire an attorney to have the High Court injunction filed.