Equity Bank has recently identified that the sale of Simbamanyo House is not connected to problems caused by the Covid-19 lock down. However, the clarification came after proprietors had long defaulted on their loan obligations.
On September 3, President Museveni gave an order to Bank of Uganda (BOU) regarding Equity Bank.
He told the Governor BOU, Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile to investigate circumstances under which Equity sold property belonging to city businessman Peter Kamya.
The property sold includes Simbamanyo House and Afrique Suites.
However, the bank avers the process was fair and open after the proprietors failed to service a loan. Even after collecting rent during lock down, he still failed.
After losing a Court Appeal that aimed at reversing the sale, the businessman then sought the intervention of president Museveni.
In his September 3 letter to the BOU Governor, president Museveni said the business man and his wife approached him. They wanted him to intervene due to Equity selling their properties.
“They state that whereas Bank of Uganda directed that there should be no foreclosure of mortgaged properties by banks during the covid-19 pandemic, Equity Bank went ahead and sold their properties at very low prices. That they had even offered to get their own buyers but all their attempts were frustrated,’’ Museveni said.
According to Equity however, after the lock down being imposed in March 2020, Simbamanyo proprietor still received rent in June 2020. But, he failed to service his loan.
Then in August 2020 Equity announced they would be auctioning Mr. Kamya’s properties if he failed to service his loan.
Kamya’s Simbamanyo House got sold to tycoon Sudhir Ruparelia’s Meera Investments at UGX 18 billion. His Afrique Suites were sold to Luwaluwa Investments. Mr. Ruparelia has since changed Simbamanyo House’s name to Gender & Labour House.