Joining the adjournment debate, Parliamentarian Eran Wickramaratene said yesterday that governance issues relating to Sri Lanka cricket need to be rectified by bringing a new constitution for Sri Lanka cricket.

Wickramaratne further said that 140 odd clubs are involved in making decisions, when in most countries such as India, the number of votes starts at 7 and goes up to 38.

He also said that a new constitution previously drafted by a team led by a prominent lawyer has been given to the minister.

Those who are in cricket say that the government must not interfere and that they are not accountable to anybody because they are a private organisation. “Sri Lanka Cricket is not a private organisation, as claimed by certain officials of the cricket board. It is a national organisation. He said.

He emphasised that Sri Lankan cricket is owned by the people of Sri Lanka and not by a few individuals or a few associations. Wickramaratne, quoting French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau, drew a distinction between the “majority vote and the majority will”. There are things that can be done by voting, but ‘majority will’ is not always equal to majority vote. People’s representatives in Parliament are raising issues in relation to cricket on behalf of the people of the nation.

The high stakes in cricket attract political interest and interference. Earlier today, a former sports minister declared that ‘we must not have political interference in sports’, in which case, ‘should politicians hold positions in sports associations? quipped Eran.

Wickramaratne referred to one-time coach Asanka Gurusinghe, who had revealed that there was overwhelming political interference. He had worked with three different sports ministers during a two-year time span and had chosen to quit. Another outstanding cricketer, Hathurusinghe, who was taken in as a coach, expressed similar sentiments.