Azeem Akhtar Stands Down as Chair


Essex County Cricket Club is sorry to announce that Azeem Akhtar has decided not to continue as Chair of Essex.

When Azeem Akhtar was appointed as Chair in November 2022, he was the stand-out candidate from a very strong field. Prior to his appointment, as with the other appointments to the Board, the selection process included a thorough and independent review of Azeem’s social media activity by specialist consultants. After his appointment to the role of Chair and following reports in the media about Azeem’s historic social media activity, further due diligence was conducted.

The due diligence conducted by the specialist consultants concluded Azeem’s social media activity to be “supportive of the Islamic faith and beliefs as opposed to being antisemitic or indicating any other forms of racism”.

Azeem said: “These last few weeks have been very difficult for my family and me. This has taken a toll on us and I am determined to do justice to my other professional and personal commitments. I am passionately committed to fighting all kinds of discrimination whether that be anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, or any other kind of prejudice. As concluded, my social media activity is reflective of my religious and political affiliations and the strong humanitarian stance I take on conflicts around the world. ECCC must lead the way with utmost sincerity in being a genuinely diverse and inclusive club. I wish ECCC the very best for the coming season and will continue to support the team as I have done every season since I was a boy.”

Essex respects the integrity Azeem has shown throughout this due diligence process, which found no evidence of anti-Semitism or racism by him. The Club acknowledges again Azeem’s all-round skill set and strength of character for the leadership role for which he was selected and is sorry to announce his resignation. We look forward to his continued support of the team. We thank Azeem and wish him well in the future.

The Club will be making no further comment.