The Commercial Court has ordered a Kampala businessman, one Haji Wahab Semakula Kibuuka to pay Shs60million to his four step children after losing a case brought against him in regard to the administration of the estate of the late Sarah Wahab Wanyana.
Justice Percy Night Tuhaise, who was in charge of the case further declared Kibuuka not a widower of the late Wanyana and thus ordered for the revocation of the letters of administration issued to him.
She also ordered that the defendant’s name be cancelled from the certificate of title and land register in his capacity of the administrator of the estate of the late Sarah Wahab Wanyana, and the names of the deceased Sarah Wanyana are to be reinstated on the title; and that the defendant is not a beneficiary to the estate of the deceased.
It all began on June 11, 2011 when Wanyana who was cohabiting with Kibuuka died. At the time of her death, she had two children with him, though she had four other children before they met.The four children are; Pual Tumusiime, Irene Kamugisa, Godfrey and Herbert Beitwa.
These dragged their step father to court accusing him of fraudulently petitioning the High Court on June 28, 2011 for letters of administration which were granted to him on November 4, 2011.
They told court that he intentionally left them out despite being children of the deceased and known to him. To them, he obtained the grant by fraud, illegality and concealment of material facts, and that he has committed acts of fraud and dishonesty prior to and since assuming administration of the estate.
In his defence, Kibuuka told court that he is the administrator of the estate of the late Wanyana to whom he was legally married.
He also informed court that he had sold off some of the properties of the estate to clear what he said loans accrued by the estate.
However, he failed to prove in court that the two were legally married at Bbutto Masjid Taqua Bweyogerere in which he claimed the couple was united was not in existence in the year he claims they got married.
“The marriage of 1982 could therefore, not have been solemnized by the said Mosque; and the Imam who purportedly signed it could not have existed in that Mosque as Bbutto Masjid Taqua Bweyogerere, the Mosque which purportedly issued the marriage certificate was built in 1986.”
Another contradiction was, Kibuuka claimed to have sold one of the properties of the estate at Shs100 million but it was later discovered that it was sold at Shs320 million.
“Kibuuka himself stated in paragraph 8 of his sworn witness statement that he sold land comprised in Kibuga Block 13 Plot 91 at Uganda Shillings 100,000,000/=. However, during cross examination, he testified that he sold it at Uganda Shs 320,000,000/=. Annexture “I” to Exhibit P1, the sale agreement between Ibrahim Ssemwogerere and Vincent Kasumba, an agreed document, shows that the land was sold at Uganda Shs 320,000,000/=.”
He claimed that he sold it to pay debts but failed to prove in court that debts he had paid off.
The late Sarah Wanyana estate included Kibuga Block No 13 Plot 81 land at Najjanankumbi; Kibuga Block 13 Plot 391 land at Najjanankumbi; Block 218 Plot 1611 land at Najjera; LRV 2288 Folio 6 Plot 57A land at Katalima Road; and 40% shares in Winston Standard Academy).
“Regarding general damages, there is evidence that the defendant (Kibuuka) obtained the grant by fraud and used it to sell off property that formed part of the estate of the late Sarah Wanyana to the prejudice of the plaintiffs who were beneficiaries to the estate.
The land sold was registered land situated in prime areas in Kampala. This would entitle the beneficiaries to general damages as beneficiaries to the estate. I would in the circumstances award general damages to the tune of Uganda Shs 60,000,000/= (sixty million).”
“New administrators should be appointed in a meeting of all beneficiaries to the estate of the late Sarah Wahab Wanyana Mukaka (the deceased) within two months from the date of this judgement. A permanent injunction restraining the defendant (Kibuuka) from dealing with the estate of the late Sarah Wahab Wanyana Mukaka (the deceased) is issued.”