Court dismisses case on Cricket Kenya
Mahendra Warsani [right] of Shree Cutchni leva Patel Samaj hits the ball at the Coast Gymkhana sports club in Mombasa. [Photo Omondi Onyango/Standard]

The High Court has thwarted efforts by five former cricket officials to stop registration of Cricket Kenya (CK) under the Sports Act of 2013.

They also failed to stop Ms Zenahravanu Janmohammed from representing CK at the Africa Cricket Association after the court found they skipped the steps prescribed by the law in solving sports disputes.

Justice Joseph Sergon said the court has no jurisdiction to hear and determine the matter because the five prematurely jumped to court.

“The dispute now before this court should have started its journey at the Sports Registrar’s doorstep, then proceed to the Sports Tribunal and finally to this court on appeal,” the judge said in his ruling that dismissed the application on October 2.

The judge also declined to issue a temporary order maintaining Harpal Sehmi, Kennedy Obuya, Kalpesh Solanki, Pearlyne Omamo and Omole Asiko as interim executive board of CK officials.

In the application that was filed in May by the five, they wanted Janmohammed stopped from representing CK at the Africa Cricket Association and the registrar restrained from proceeding with any adverse action concerning the registration status of CK under the Sports Act no. 25 of 2013.

Sehmi and his group urged the court to grant the orders to maintain the status quo regarding the registration and to also enable them to access the association’s bank accounts.  The court was told the organisation has an annual income of Sh18 million running.

It was argued that the plaintiffs, Janmohammed, Tom Tikolo, Mukhtar Assaria and Charles Nyaberi were the officials who recorded a consent order in which an interim executive board was appointed to be in place before a substantive board is appointed.

Court dismisses case on Cricket Kenya
Zenahravanu Janmohammed with members of Kenya’s Under 19 team during a past event. [Edward Kiplimo, Standard]

In response, Janmohammed pointed out through her lawyer Walter Amoko that the consent order had no provision for extension of the time limit.  She also pointed out that CK was not before the court hence no order should be granted.

The court was told the five have no powers to file the suit on behalf of CK since their term in office lapsed. 

She argued that the dispute should have gone to the Registrar of Sports, then to the Sports Tribunal and eventually to the High Court on appeal.  The court was invited to find that the case was an abuse of the court process because this court lacks jurisdiction to entertain hence the orders sought cannot be issued.

The court was also told that Tikolo and Assaria are not officials of CK therefore there is no cause of action against them.

The Sports Registrar argued that under Section 16(2) of the Government Proceedings Act, the court has no powers to grant an injunction against the office.

It is this Act that provides that the court shall not in any civil proceedings grant any injunction or make any order against an officer of the Government if the effect of granting the injunction or making the order would be to give any relief against the Government which could not have been obtained in proceedings against it.

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