By Spy Uganda
Kampala: In response to the outcry made by Peter Kamya ex-owner of the Simbamanyo House now Gender & Labour House (now owned by Sudhir Ruparelia), President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has revealed that he can’t help them because the properties were sold legally.
Remember that in an October 25 letter, the President earlier petitioned by Mr. Kamya to intervene in the matter indicates that he has been advised by both the Attorney General and the Bank of Uganda that the sale of Mr. Kamya’s properties followed due court process.
The President wrote: “Following receipt of your complaint to me about the illegal sale of your properties by Equity Bank, I directed the Attorney General and the Governor, Bank of Uganda to investigate the complaint and report back to me,”
“I have been advised that the sale was legal since you had defaulted on the payment of the loan did not deposit 30 percent of the loan amount as was ordered by the court. They have further advised that you are at liberty to pursue other remedies in court,” the President wrote.
Mr. Kamya’s Simbamanyo House was in October 2020, sold to tycoon Sudhir Ruparelia’s Meera Investments at UGX 18.5 billion while his Afrique Suites was sold to Luwaluwa Investments.
Mr. Ruparelia has since renamed Simbamanyo House to Gender & Labour House.
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).