City lawyer Daudi Mpanga and Vision Group chief executive officer, Robert Kabushenga, have confessed meeting in Bugolobi outside Kampala as captured in a viral video.
“You may have seen a video going around of me meeting with Robert Kabushenga and alleging that I was meeting to leak information to him about Sudhir,” Mpanga said, admitting the authenticity of the video.
“Robert is a very good friend of mine and he, Aga Sekalala and I meet regularly for a chat and a drink of tea (we are all teetotal),” he explained.
Mpanga says his relationship with Kabushenga is part mutual mentorship, part networking and part informed debate.
“We are professionals and do not generally discuss our work or betray work confidences,” he noted, adding, “So Sudhir is mistaken to believe that we met to talk about him. We have a lot more in common than that.”
He went on: “We are taking the invasion of privacy up with Silk Lounge because we were regulars there – I say were because I will never go back again.”
Kabushenga too tried to explain the video thus: “Just so you know, the meeting in that video took place on Tuesday last week”.
He says by then, the story had been running since Sunday in New Vision.
“We (me, Aga Sekalala & Daudi Mpanga) do tea at least once a month & Liquid Silk is our joint. This particular evening we chatted from 9-12 midnight.”
Kabushenga said his reporters learnt from court on Friday that a suit had been filed and that summons had issued.
“We did not meet to discuss Crane Bank because the story had already been running for 3 days when we met.”
The disturbing video shows Kabushenga, said to be a personal friend of Sudhir Ruparelia meeting Mpanga who is part of the lawyers in Sudhir’s court case filed against him by Bank of Uganda for allegedly embezzling over Shs400bn from Crane bank.
It is said after meeting Mpanga, New Vision started releasing a series of stories about Crane bank saga with the aim of blackmailing the businessman.
Mirundi weighs in
Appearing on NBS TV Tuesday morning, presidential advisor on media matters, Tamale Mirundi, said people [like Kabushenga] think that painting Sudhir as bad in the media will kill him but it will not.
“If Sudhir were as clever as I, he would let the media write whatever because it shows that Bank Of Uganda has no control.”
He advised Bank of Uganda to get a public relations officer to save face because the more Sudhir is painted bad, the more Bank of Uganda goes down.
Host: Will Sudhir be arrested?
Tamale: Sudhir’s case is not legal. It cannot be solved by this government, same as Kaweesi’s murder. The government is being threatened. When the government is threatened, everything that comes up is a referendum.
In 2015, a war of words intensified between Mirundi and Kabushenga as the motor-mouthed president’s dog accused the New Vision boss of fighting Museveni.
Mirundi linked Kabushenga to other state mafias who profit from creating scandalous situations for their would-be friends.
According to Mirundi, the alleged Shs400bn embezzled by Sudhir was instead siphoned by the same people who led to the collapse of National Bank of Commerce (NBC).
Bank of Uganda took over the management of NBC on September 27, 2012 and sent depositors to Crane Bank Ltd.
The majority shareholders of NBC were; then Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi, Crown Beverages chairman Amos Nzeyi, and Information and Communication Technology Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda.
Bank of Uganda Governor, Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile, was also a shareholder in the bank, which by 2009 was the 22nd biggest bank out of 23 then with an estimated combined asset base of about 50 billion shillings.