By Samuel Whyte
After being relentlessly persuaded to rethink his decision to wash his hands of cricket in Berbice, the indomitable Hilbert Foster was yesterday elected President of the Berbice Cricket Board.
The elections, which were held at the New Amsterdam Town Hall, were called to order by a representative of the High Court.
Before voting began, Colin Bynoe and GCB Secretary Anan Sanasie were nominated as returning Officers with Bynoe winning out 19-15.
Barring some minor glitches, the elections were well conducted as set out by the order of Justice Navendra Singh in the High Court.
Foster defeated Direndranauth Somwaru 18-16 for the position as President. The hard working Foster, who is the secretary and CEO of the Rose Hall Town Youth and Sports, made a last minute decision to accept the wishes of the stake holders to vie for the position.
Foster, a man who wears many hats, has being looked at near and far for his untiring work in the education, sports, youth, culture, community development sectors among others. He has being credited as the force to his club being awarded the Medal of Service.
Although voting was close the slate representing Foster Swept all the positions available with voting being done over on two occasions due to ties.
Businessman and Former National Coach Albert Smith defeated David Black 18-16, for the position of Vice President, after the first round of voting went 17 apiece.
Jevaughn Stephen the Region 6, Director of Regional Health Services defeated Intiaz Bacchus 18-16 for another Vice President Position, while Head teacher Qualis Winter was elected unopposed as the other Vice President.
Businessman and farmer Rabindranauth Saywack is the Secretary after defeating Vickram Sieubarran 18-16 on the second round of voting.
Doctor Cecil Beharry is the Treasurer winning 18-16 from Godwyn Allicock.
Ameer Rahaman, a school teacher, takes up the position as Assistant Secretary after winning from Carol Nurse 18-16.
Businessman Winston Roberts defeated Leslie Solomon 18-15 to take up the position of Assistant Treasurer.
Angela Haniff and Albert Smith with 20 and 18 votes respectively were elected BCB representatives to the GCB along with the President and Secretary.
Returning Officer Bynoe, a retired Head teacher and CEO of the New Amsterdam Hospital, was commended for keeping things under control and doing a commendable job.
After the elections Sanasie, who was invited to speak by Bynoe, stated that he was there in the capacity of an observer. He said that he, on behalf of the GCB is satisfied with the way the elections were conducted. He promised the full support of the GCB and to work with the newly elected office bearers.
Foster in short speech, said he had to break his own commitment, but assured all his supporters that he will not let them down. He had special words of thanks for Smith and Saywack for their untiring work.
He promised to make the BCB the best in Guyana and ranking in the Caribbean. He said he will be a president for all and will strive to make sure that cricket is once again played throughout Berbice. Foster promised that, “…before the end of the year there will be about 15 competitions, from the U13 level right up to senior. We will be playing inter zone cricket to make sure that cricket is played at the grass root level.”
Clubs are asked to get their grounds in order for the start of competition shortly.
Foster promised to make the board as transparent as possible with regular financial statements and the setting up of a facebook page.
Foster ended by Quoting the words of Former United States President George Bush “You aint see nothing yet.” He plans to make the BCB the talk of Guyana and the Caribbean.
The associations and clubs that participated at the electoral process were – Upper Corentyne, West Berbice and Berbice River Cricket Associations; Blairmont, Albion and Rose Hall Community Centers, Police, Mental Hospital, Mounts Sinai, Kildonan Sports Club, Bermine Sports Club, Port Mourant, Whim and Chesney Cricket Clubs.
The associations had four votes each, while the clubs were afforded two votes each