Court to Rule on Sudhir-Crane Bank Shs397b Case

  • by Brenda Nyangoma
  • August 26, 2019

The Head of the Commercial Court, Justice David Wangutusi is today set to deliver his ruling on the preliminary objection by city tycoon Sudhir Ruparelia in the case in which the Bank of Uganda took him to court,  with the aim of recovering Shs397 billion.

Justice Wangutusi set the date for the ruling after hearing an application filed by Mr. Ruparelia who asked the court to dismiss the Shs397b commercial case against him.

Bank of Uganda (BoU) /Crane Bank in Receivership sued Sudhir Ruparelia and Meera Investments Limited of allegedly fleecing the defunct  Crane Bank Limited (CBL) of Shs397 billion that the central bank wants refunded.

However, Mr. Sudhir maintains his bank was fraudulently taken by BoU and subsequently given away to Dfcu bank.

Additionally, the businessman contends that when Crane Bank went into receivership, it lost its powers to “sue” and to “be sued”, rendering the suit against him and Meera Investments Company, a nullity.

In the event that the presiding judge agrees with the arguments fronted by Mr Ruparelia, the multibillion case will be dismissed.

But should the judge agree with Crane Bank in receivership, Justice Wangutusi will hear the case until judgment is passed at a later date.

During last month’s court hearing, Mr Joseph Matsiko, one of Mr Ruparelia’s lawyers, argued that on October 20, 2016, Bank of Uganda (BoU) took over the management of Crane Bank pursuant to Sections 87 (3) and 88 (1) a & (b) of the Financial Institutions Act and that on January 20, 2018, BoU placed it under receivership.

“The suit was filed on the 30th day of June 2017 when Crane Bank Ltd was in receivership. The issue, therefore, is whether a suit can be filed by a financial institution in receivership,” Mr Matsiko submitted.