Today the prized Investigator website highlights how businessman Sudhir Ruparelia could have acquired Speke Hotel dubiously. This is after we previously and, meticulously so, highlighted how he could have equally, deceitfully scooped the Parliamentary Avenue-premised Baumann House. This is in furtherance of our campaign intended to lay bare the supposed property impropriety involving Sudhir, but the same which has gone unquestioned for so long now, thanks to his manipulation of the law and its managers.
Speke Hotel used to be owned by an Asian known as Ferroz Kassam and others. Apart from being one amongst the biggest original owners of Speke Hotel, Ferroz owns Kob House too. Kob House is located along Bombo Road. The complex lies adjacent to Karim Hirji’s Equatorial Hotel and overlooks Pastor Garry Skinner’s Watoto Main Church Complex across and opposite the other Bombo Road tarmac. Sudhir’s acquisition of Speke hotel is debatably covered in deceit. How?
Ferroz himself had duly placed a caveat on the facility. The original owner had smelt mischief. The same mischief was supposedly being masterminded by Sudhir. For this reason, Ferroz thought it prudent to move to the Land Titles’ Registry where he duly secured the caveat. He was, of course, taking such a measure in order to preserve the original ownership of the property. That legal process done and dusted, Ferroz now went away thinking that, now that the caveat was in place, there was no way any unscrupulous person, nor any other entity, for that matter, was going to be able to deal with the property let alone altering it to third parties.
But Uganda being Uganda, and as it turned out there after, the Attorney General of the day, Joseph Ekemu, would secretly remove the same caveat from the Hotel facility. The same development by the Attorney General would end up handing Sudhir the much-needed opportunity to now reportedly alter the hotel to himself. Oddly, and perhaps as a pointer to the deceit which had been involved in this transaction, the rather respectable Attorney General would go ahead and remove the caveat on a non-working day. That day happened to be a Saturday!
Please kindly mark here that what happened to the caveats that had been placed over Speke Hotel to stop alternation of Ferroz’s ownership of the same, is exactly the same which would happen years much later, in the case of Ssimbamannyo building and Afrique Suites. Just as it would turn out in the case of Speke Hotel, the architect of the removal of the caveats and the beneficiary thereof in the case of the ongoing Ssimbamannyo and Afrique Suites is one and only SUDHIR RUPARELIA.
Perhaps as a result of this glaring bad faith on his part, Ekemu wound wind up as a disgraced Attorney General after being arrested, prosecuted and jailed. The former AG had been arrested for swindling money which the government had released for the benefit of his kindreds back home in Teso, the Eastern part of the country. Ferroz would try to fight off the impropriety in the courts. But as usual, Sudhir would apply the legal doctrine of the Bonafide purchaser for valuer without knowledge of impropriety, to defeat Ferroz’s big stake in the multi-billion property.
Betrayed and frustrated by the country’s legal system, Ferroz would thus pack up, just like Somani in the case of Baumann House, and leave behind Uganda and its unjust laws. He has since set up shop in the neighboring Tanzania and without any sign that he would ever return to invest in Uganda. Apart from picking rent from Kob House and swiftly repatriating the same out of the country. And just like in the case of Baumann House, Sudhir has been collecting huge proceeds from the hotel business at Speke Hotel as Ferroz, on the other hand, continues to curse Uganda and its unjust laws. Keep watching this space we are going to revert soon with more of this kind of impropriety.
- Mr. Stephen Kasozi Muwambi is a seasoned crime investigative writer, majoring in judicial-based stories. His two decades’ experience as a senior investigative journalist has made him one of the best to reckon on in Uganda. He can also be reached via [email protected]
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