Graeme Smith has been cleared out from the racist allegations

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Graeme Smith’s contract as director of cricket for South Africa ended in March 2022

Graeme Smith, the former Director of Cricket of Cricket South Africa, has cleared the various racist allegations due to the lack of evidence against him offered by the two independent arbitrators – Adv Ngwako Maenetje SC and Adv Michael Bishop. 

The former Director of Cricket of Cricket South Africa, Graeme Smith has cleared the different racist allegations from his name due to a lack of evidence against him offered by the two independent arbitrators – Adv Ngwako Maenetje SC and Adv Michael Bishop. 

The arbitration emanated from CSA’s Social Justice and Nation-Building (SJN) process. In the arbitration award, Adv Maenetje SC and Adv Bishop have determined that:

  1. There was no evidentiary basis to conclude that Mr. Smith engaged in racial discrimination against Mr. Thami Tsolekile during the period 2012-2014;
  2. There was no evidentiary basis to conclude that Mr. Smith was racially biased against black leadership at CSA; and
  3. There was no evidentiary basis to conclude Mr. Smith’s appointment of Mr. Mark Boucher, rather than Mr. Enoch Nkwe, as coach of the men’s Proteas team in 2019 amounted to unfair racial discrimination.

Lawson Naidoo, Chair of the CSA Board, commented:

“The manner in which these issues have been dealt with and resolved by the arbitration proceedings confirms CSA’s commitment to deal with the SJN issues in a manner that treats them with utmost seriousness but also ensures fairness, due process, and finality.”

Naidoo added:

“Now that finality on these processes has been reached, it is appropriate to recognize the extraordinary contribution that Graeme has made to South African cricket, first as the longest-serving test captain in cricket history and then as Director of Cricket from 2019 to 2022. His role as the DoC has been critical in rebuilding the Proteas Men’s team in particular and has laid a solid foundation for his successor.”

In a release on Sunday, CSA stated that

“CSA appreciates it has been difficult for Mr. Smith to endure the unwarranted public disclosures of his personal information, including his remuneration, during the SJN process. CSA regrets that this occurred and wishes Mr. Smith everything of the best going forward.”

Independent arbitrators Adv Ngwako Maenetje SC and Adv Michael Bishop cleared Smith on all four charges of racial discrimination with costs.

“I’m grateful that my name has finally been cleared,”

Smith said in a statement.

“I’ve always given South African cricket my utmost, as a player, captain, and administrator, over the last 20 years.

“So, to hear these baseless allegations of racism being made has been extremely difficult, both for me and my family.

“It has been exhausting and distracting, not least because South African cricket has also been going through a well-publicized rebuilding process which has required a lot of attention.

“I’m just pleased that we have now gone through a robust arbitration process before independent, objective arbitrators and I have been completely vindicated.”

The attorney of Smith, David Becker, was evidently vexed at the outcome of the SJN report, which released “tentative findings” implicating Smith in alleged racially discriminatory behavior.

“Unfortunately, there was a multitude of opportunistic claims and insinuations made before the SJN, which were not properly tested and were false,”

Becker said in the same statement as his client.

“The allegations made against Graeme Smith, in particular, were made by a small group of disgruntled individuals with an obvious agenda to tarnish his good name and have him removed as the director of cricket.

“These vexatious claims and insinuations were serious and defamatory. Graeme has every right to feel aggrieved by these personal attacks. However, it is a testimony to his character and leadership that he has held his head up high throughout this process, focused on the job at hand, and continued to play a hugely significant role in assisting South African cricket.

“Graeme remains enormously grateful for the opportunity to serve South African cricket.”

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