Rafiq and Hutton to give testimony to MPs

Azeem Rafiq played for Yorkshire between 2008 and 2018 and was county captain in 2012

Former Yorkshire player Azeem Rafiq and former county chairman Roger Hutton will testify at a Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee hearing on Tuesday.

MPs will hear from Rafiq after a report found he was the victim of “racial harassment and intimidation,” but the club said that I would not discipline anyone.

Hutton, who said “no one in Yorkshire was racist” After resigning from the presidency on November 5, he will answer questions about Yorkshire’s handling of the case.

Tom Harrison, Executive Director of the Cricket Board of England and Wales (ECB), will also provide evidence on the ECB’s role in the racism scandal, its complaints procedure and the broader implications for the game.

ECB President Barry O’Brien has retired due to health problems. Also present from the ECB will be senior director of cricket Alan Dickinson, director of communications Kate Miller and Meena Botros, director of legal and integrity.

Former Yorkshire CEO Mark Arthur, who resigned last week, he was expected to appear but is not on the list, while cricket director Martyn Moxon is currently retired from work with a “stress-related illness.”

When is it happening

The hearing will begin at 09:30 GMT on Tuesday, November 16. Rafiq will give evidence first, before Hutton at 10:15 and Harrison starting at 11:15.

It will take place in The Wilson Room, Portcullis House, an office building in Westminster.

What could happen?

People who testify at a committee hearing, and the deputies who appear at it, are given parliamentary privileges, so they can speak without fear of civil or criminal action.

Therefore, we can find more details about Rafiq’s claims, including the names of the people at the center of his complaints.

The full report has not been released, but has been given to the committee for hearing.

New Yorkshire President Lord Patel said he “welcomes” the audience and “will be listening with great interest to help us understand the past and address the many challenges that have come to light.”

Why is it happening?

The committee’s hearing was called after the government was dissatisfied with the way Yorkshire handled the investigation and the delay in sharing the full report with Rafiq and the ECB.

In September 2020, after an initial interview with Wisden,External link Rafiq, who played for Yorkshire between 2008 and 2018 and moved to England from Pakistan at age 10, told ESPN CricinfoExternal link The “institutional racism” he encountered while at the club left him on the brink of taking his life.

He told BBC Sport he feared “every second” of his career and that a teammate would use a racially offensive term linked to his Pakistani heritage.

Yorkshire launched a formal investigation into Rafiq’s allegations in September 2020 and Hutton said the club would carry out a “broader review” of its “policies and culture.”

In August 2021, three days after Yorkshire received the findings of the independent report by the Squire Patton Boggs law firm, accepted Rafiq was “the victim of inappropriate behavior,” something Rafiq said was downplaying racism – and offered his “deep apologies”.

The summary of the report said that Rafiq was “a victim of racial harassment and intimidation”, with seven of the 43 allegations confirmed, although the club said they could not publish the full report for legal reasons. They said there was insufficient evidence to conclude that the club was institutionally racist.

Rafiq questioned what punishments had been imposed on former players and a coach who had been found guilty of using racist language. He also questioned the validity of the research.

A story published by ESPN said the report had concluded that a racially offensive term used toward Rafiq was considered a “joke.”

Deputy Julian Knight, chairman of the DCMS select committee, called it “one of the most disgusting and disturbing episodes in modern cricket history.”

Knight’s comments came after Health Secretary Sajid Javid called for “heads to roll” in Yorkshire and said that if the ECB did not take action, “it is not fit for purpose”. Furthermore, he claimed in a Twitter post that the term allegedly used to describe Rafiq was “no joke.”

How can I track it?

The audience will be available to see liveExternal link and the BBC Sport website and app will provide updates in a live text commentary.

Reference-www.bbc.co.uk

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