KAMPALA, Uganda: This morning the country woke up to a disturbing advert regarding the planned auction of a number of prime properties belonging to city businessman Patrick Bitature. Hundreds of Ugandans who read the advert, immediately contacted us for what was going on.
They did so because we had only last week, ran a story where the judge had declared as invalid, the loans for which the auctioneers were now advertising Bitature’s properties for auction. The story titled; “Must Read Big Story: Tycoon Patrick Bitature Floors South African Loan Sharks in Fraudulent UDS30M Transaction,” ran in these pages on May 11th 2022.
Justice Musa Ssekaana issued the ruling declaring the loan transactions to have been invalid. The judge observed that the South African-based Vantage Mezzanine Fund 11 Partnership, breached the law by issuing the purported loans without registering with the Ugandan relevant authorities first.
In light of the judgement, and upon reading the advert announcing the auction of the securities Bitature supposedly staked with Vantage, Ugandans quickly reverted to ask which is which. They were right. In our quest for answers, the Temple of Justice came in handy. A summarized extraction out of the big ruling delivered by Justice Ssekaana had the ripostes clear.
The three paragraphed ruling bearing the names and signatures of the judge, unambiguously dismisses the loan transaction as having been invalid. It is therefore as obvious as night follows day that whatever else that sprang from the invalid transaction was also by that ruling, invalid to the letter. One even doesn’t need to be a PHD holder of law to figure out this gist.
“The judgement is very clear. The lawyers of the moneylenders are simply posturing around, hence in the process, misleading their clients into believing that they are actually doing something to bring to life, the long dead case,” a senior lawyer opined. The legal mindwondered how the eminent firm of lawyers representing the losing party can go on and breach the court judgement, well aware that they are supposed to be officers of court themselves!
“Lawyers are supposed to help the court to meet the ends of justice. Following the issuance of a judgment or a ruling, lawyers would either advise the client to appeal, if they have good grounds of appeal, or to accept the judgement graciously.” He further clarifies that lawyers are not merchants of fortune as to misadvise clients to breach the law merely because they are seeking to earn money from them.
In the same breadth, Bitature, through his lawyers of Muwema and Company Advocates, last night issued a full statement regarding the moneylenders` auction attempt stance. Below is the statement in full…
MR PATRICK BITATURE RESPONDS
We act for M/s Simba Properties Investment Co. Ltd, the registered proprietor of Protea Hotel – Naguru SKyz, Elizabeth Royal Apartments and Moyo Close Apartments.
1. Our Client’s attention is drawn to a public auction advert issued by Quickway Auctioneers and Court Bailiffs appearing at Page 9 of the Monitor newspaper of today purporting to offer our client’s abovementioned properties for sale upon the instructions of M/s Kirunda & Wasige Advocates.
2. We wish to inform the general public that the said Advert has been issued without any legal basis. It is a malicious advert whose sole purpose is to alarm and cause irreparable damage to our client’s business and reputation.
3. In that regard, we state the correct position of the matter as follows:
i) Our client’s properties are not liable to be advertised for sale by any mortgagee purported to be represented by Kirunda & Wasige Advocates and Quickway Auctioneers and Court Bailiffs.
ii) M/s Kirunda & Wasige Advocates used to act for Vantage Mezzanine Fund II Partnership, in a long-standing Commercial dispute with our client which was decided against them recently.
iii) The above dispute was settled on the 9th May 2022 by Hon. Justice Musa Ssekana of the High Court when he declared in Misc. Cause No. 205 of 2021 Vantage Mezzanine Fund II Partnership vs Simba Properties Investment Co. Ltd, that Vantage Mezzanine Fund II Partnership is a non-existent legal entity which had no locus standi to file the suit.
iv) A copy of the self-explanatory Court Order which must be respected by all persons is attached for ease of reference.
v) So, from the 9th May 2022, M/s Kirunda & Wasige Advocates ceased to have a client to act for and for that matter, they cannot claim to be instructed to take legal action of any form by or for the non-existent Vantage Mezzanine Fund II Partnership.
vi) The action taken by Kirunda & Wasige Advocates and Quickway Auctioneers and Court Bailiffs tends to disabuse the binding judicial authority which nullifies any masquerade of legal existence by Vantage Mezzanine Fund II Partnership when they unlawfully purport to resurrect it with legal personality rights, whereas not.
vii) The above misguided and unprofessional conduct by the said lawyers and auctioneers undermines the authority of the courts of law to adjudicate disputes between the parties and is also in blatant disregard and contempt of court orders.
viii) Our client has therefore instructed us to exorcise the ghost of the non-existent Vantage Mezzanine Fund II Partnership by taking the appropriate compensatory legal action against its promoters, lawyers, Auctioneers and Monitor newspaper for the offensive publication.
ix) Our client’s well-wishers, business associates and the general public are informed and advised accordingly to ignore the impugned public notice.
Anyone who acts upon the falsehoods and misrepresentation in the impugned public notice does so at their grave risk and peril.
DATED at Kampala the 18th day of May, 2022.
MUWEMA & CO. ADVOCATES
(COUNSEL FOR SIMBA PROPERTIES INVESTMENT CO. LTD)
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