16 Nov

A leaked document reveals how a practice of Cricket Australia (CA) officials receiving wads of cash in envelopes at International Cricket Council (ICC) meetings in Dubai was brought to a halt after concerns were raised about it internally reports The Sydney Morning Herald. 

The shutting down of the cash allowances of $US500 per day (A$696) was conveyed in an October 14, 2019 email from Michelle Tredenick, the chair of CA's People, Culture and Ethics Committee, to other directors in which she also detailed how chairman Earl Eddings would have his salary increased from $204,000 to $250,000 following a remuneration review as well as be given an additional allowance of $5000 per trip to an ICC meeting. 

Ms Tredenick’s email stated “... we have also taken a diff approach to the provision of travel allowances provided by the ICC to directors travelling on ICC business - previously the Chair and the CEO generally. These were previously paid in cash directly to person. We have agreed that they be paid to CA instead and all expenses be paid by CA through corporate credit card processes. 

“This is better governance. At the same time for the chair we have instituted (paid by CA) an allowance of 5k per trip to compensate for time away from work/business whilst overseas on CA business, which can be considerable throughout the year and is over and above the Chair duties generally.” 

The CA chairman, like other ICC directors from member nations around the world, was given $US500 per day in cash allowances by the world game's governing body when he attended week-long ICC meetings while the CEO and other non-ICC directors were handed $US125 ($A175) per day. 

A CA spokeswoman said when a CA policy was introduced around the payments in July 2019 a financial reconciliation process was undertaken in which Mr Eddings paid back less than $3000 of allowances received over a 12 to 18-month period. 

Mr Eddings said on Sunday (15 November) it was he and Mr Roberts who brought it to the board's attention. He said he had just attended his first ICC meeting as full-time chairman after being appointed in November 2018, having filled in for predecessor David Peever at a previous meeting and accompanied him to others. 

"I was the one who came back to the board with Kevin and said 'listen this is how it's been going on for 10, 15 years, it's all above board, I just don't feel comfortable getting cash," Mr Eddings said. "I was the one with Kevin who changed the process. Him and I did it together ... we came back to the board with a recommendation. Not that there was anything wrong, it just didn't feel quite right getting envelopes of cash, even though it was a process from the ICC." 

Mr Roberts, who was forced out of the organisation in June, declined to comment on Sunday. A source close to his long-term predecessor as CEO, James Sutherland, said Mr Sutherland had always returned any cash received at the ICC and handed it over in full to CA, using a CA corporate card at meetings for expenses. 

A CA spokeswoman said, "While cash allowances are an ICC policy, it was raised internally to the board in April 2019 after an ICC meeting. It was after this trip that there was a recommendation to the board as to how future treatment of ICC cash allowances were handled.  ICC allowances are provided to cover out of pocket expenses when they attend ICC board meetings, committee meetings or working group meetings". She said the duration of meetings varied from three to seven days and the chair and CEO would attend four a year. 

"The policy was introduced from July 2019 with all cash payments declared under the new policy and all cash accounted for by receipts or deposited into CA’s bank account. Cash allowances from the ICC meetings prior to the amended policy were reconciled and the money was deposited into CA’s bank account against receipts provided." 

The CA spokeswoman said the $5000 per trip subsequently given to the chairman was "an additional director fee for attendance at ICC meetings and was introduced to compensate for time away from work/business whilst overseas on CA business, which could be considerable throughout the year". 

Mr Eddings was last year commissioned to review the governance of the ICC by its then chairman Shashank Manohar. 

John Stephenson 


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