By Spy Uganda
It is a double loss for Simbamanyo Estates Boss Peter Kamya after court ordered him to cough over UGX1.3b to Equity Bank, Meera Investments (owned by Sudhir Ruparelia) and Luwaluwa Investments Limited.
This order came after Court Registrar Elias Kisawuzi trashed six cases filed by Simbamanyo Estates Limited and Kamya against Equity bank seeking the cancellation of the sale of multibillion building Simbamanyo House to Meera Investments and Afrique Suites in Mutungo which was sold to Luwaluwa Investments.
Court held that Equity bank was right to sell the properties since the proprietors of Simbamanyo Estates had ”defaulted on their loan obligations when they failed to pay any money as required in the contract the two parties signed.”
From the above ruling, Court ordered Simbamanyo Estates Limited and Kamya to pay UGX600M to Equity Bank, UGX400M to Meera Investments Limited, UGX300M to Luwaluwa Investments Limited.
Genesis Of This Saga
It all began when the two entities of Equity Bank Uganda and Equity Bank Kenya contributed money together of $3.5m and $2.5m respectively of which Simbamanyo Estates challenged saying that it only considered $7.19m (Shs26.48b), hence accusing Equity Bank Uganda of conniving with Equity Bank Kenya to illegally carry business in Uganda where it has no jurisdiction.
Simbamanyo contended that it started servicing the loan but required more financing, which culminated into additional facilities granted by Equity Bank Uganda of $1.2m (about sh4.3b) for the completion of the construction of a hotel at Mutungo, a Kampala suburb, and to take over a prior facility from Shelter Afrique hotel.
In addition, the estate company noted that Equity Bank Uganda and Kenya brokered a new deal with Bank one, a Mauritius-based bank, to lend $10m (sh36b) to it to pay the old loan with Equity Bank lenders.
In fear of the impending adverse actions at the time, Simbamanyo says it accepted the Bank one loan offer, which was made on November 16, 2017, to bridge a $10m Mauritian loan for purposes of refinancing the existing loans for a period of 24 months.
Putting the estate’s dissatisfaction aside, on August 7 and 11 this year, the bank advertised the sale of the two properties by way of public auction. The advert for the sale of the mortgaged properties intended to enforce the disputed credit facility advanced on November 30, 2017.
This is how Equity Bank sold the property to Sudhir’s Meera Investments Company Limited at a whopping $5million approx. (shs18.5 billion) in an effort to recover Bank’s unpaid loan amounting to about $8.1million (approx. Shs30billion).