By Kagenyi Lukka
The case in which city property tycoon and former crane bank owner, Dr Sudhir Ruparelia is accusing Sebalu and Lule advocates of conflict interest has been allocated to Justice Lydia Alividza of the commercial court division of the High Court.
On 20th February 2019, when this matter came up for further hearing, it was adjourned to today 1st March 2019 because the trial Judge, Justice David Wangutusi was sick at that time.
At the commercial court today, Rajiv Ruparelia, son to Dr Sudhir Ruparelia came in company of lawyers of Kampala Associated Advocates while Sebalu and Lule advocates made no appearance.
The trial judge, David Wangutusi then allocated the case file to his junior, Justice Alividza because he is currently handling several cases involving Dr Ruparelia, his defunct crane bank, dfcu and Bank of Uganda.
In December, 2018 Dr Sudhir Ruparelia ran to seek redress from commercial court pointing out that Sebalu and Lule advocates were unfit to represent Bank of Uganda (BoU) and dfcu bank because they once represented crane management services which at one time managed properties of former cbl all which belonged to the Ruparelia group of companies.
In his plaint, Uganda’s richest business man argued, “In view of the advocate client relationship, between the applicant(crane management services sued dfcu bank), the latter’s continued participation as defence counsel for the second respondent(dfcu) herein, which is a defendant in High Court Civil Suit (HCCS) No 109/2018 against the plaintiff is prejudicial to the applicant’s head suit”.
Sudhir also demanded that the judge issues a permanent injunction on Sebalu and Lule Law Firm banning them from appearing before a court case as the shielding units for dfcu bank, and the other court cases that Crane Management Services and dfcu are engaged in.
Sebalu and Lule advocates were last year appointed as replacements for MMAKS and AF Mpanga advocates who were in December 2017 discontinued from representing the central bank due to conflict of interest in the land mark ruling of Justice David Wangutusi.
Once Sudhir’s prayers are granted, it will be a continuation of a series of knockouts against BoU and conflicted lawyers.