Former South African Airways CEO and Vodacom executive Vuyani Jarana has reportedly turned down an offer to be Cricket South Africa’s new CEO.
Interviews for the permanent chief executive post – currently temporarily filled by Pholetsi Moseki – were held two months ago, and it is believed CSA settled on Jarana, a high-powered candidate who has a track record of turning organisations around, as their preferred candidate.
But Jarana has apparently since declined CSA’s offer, sources close to the CSA board have told The Citizen.
The reasons for his withdrawal from contention are not known, but there has been speculation that someone with such a distinguished record in the private sector comes with a price tag that the financially-constrained organisation would not be able to meet.
There has been no official comment from CSA, but Andisa Ntsubane, chairman of the board’s HR committee, said on Tuesday that the “search process is still ongoing to find the most ideal candidate to take CSA forward”.
With a new board in place since June and some stability returning to the running of the sport in the country, the appointment of a full-time CEO is one of the last pieces of the puzzle needing to be put in place.
But this delay means CSA will scramble into the new year still searching for their operational leader, with sources indicating the federation will need to restart the whole process of appointing a permanent CEO.
Moseki is well liked within CSA circles and has done a fine job behind the scenes, but it is believed the board are trying to find a ‘bigger’ name – a strong character and leader, and a captain of industry who will stand up to the directors.
Given how Jarana was willing to lock horns with both government and his own board in trying to turn SAA around before his resignation in May 2019, it is not surprising CSA were going to approach the 51-year-old, though that path now seems to be closed.