UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | The Supreme Court of Uganda has delivered another landmark ruling, which is a clear win for Dr Sudhir Ruparelia who has been fighting against people who took over Crane Bank.
The Bank of Uganda (BOU) placed Crane Bank Uganda under receivership and sold its assets to DFCU Bank. Since then, there have been a series of battles in the court. Here’s a timeline of events:
- Crane bank assets sold to DFCU bank by BOU.
- BOU filed a suit under Crane Bank in receivership against Dr Sudhir Ruparelia and Meera Investments in order to recover over 400 billion shillings and 48 land titles.
- The suit gets dismissed by the High Court under the premise that a bank under receivership cannot sue and demands BOU pay the costs.
- BOU appealed to the Court of Appeal, which upheld the findings of the High Court. The issue was raised to the Supreme Court.
- BOU placed Crane Bank into liquidation (before the Supreme Court hearing) which alters the status of the bank before the Court.
- The Supreme Court dismissed the application by BOU to change the status of Crane Bank from receivership to liquidation.
The Supreme Court ruled:
“The 1st respondent was closed as a financial institution and placed under receivership. Upon closure, it ceased being a financial institution under the Act and it could, therefore, not be progressed to liquidation. The 2nd respondent’s act therefore of moving the 1st respondent to liquidation is contrary to the above clear provisions of the law and the same cannot be sanctioned by this court.”
Sudhir filed an application shortly after for a temporary injunction objecting to the move by the Bank of Uganda placing Crane Bank under Liquidation, yet there was an appeal before the Supreme Court showing that Crane Bank was under Receivership.
- In the application submitted by Sudhir, he demanded that a declaration be issued, outlining that BOU was in contempt of court orders.
- The Court has finally ruled that Crane Bank should not be put into liquidation, a restraining order was issued to BOU to halt them from continuing the liquidation process and an order was issued to ensure that the status of Crane Bank is restored to the same status as it had when the suit was filed. Finally, the Court declared BOU was in contempt of Court Orders.
After this landmark win for Dr Sudhir, he has continued to fight. This time he has sued BOU Legal head Margaret Kaggwa Kasule for Contempt of Court, through his lawyers led by Kampala Associated Advocates.
“Our client was the successful party in Court of Appeal Civil Appeal 252 of 2019 Crane Bank Limited (In Receivership) vs Sudhir Ruparelia & Another where the Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the High Court in High Court Civil Suit 493 of 2017 to wit that the 131 Respondent had no locus to institute proceedings against the Applicant and its plaint did not disclose a cause of action,” part of the notice of intention to sue reads.
Kasule is accused of giving the Central Bank advice to liquidate Crane Bank and to apply for a temporary injunction that would restrain Dr Sudhir from filing resolutions concerning Crane Bank.
Apart from Kasule, implicated in contempt of Court include Governor Emmanuel Mutebile, Deputy Governor, Executive Director Supervision, Director Research, and Director Economic, among others.
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