Renowned city lawyer, Roberts Friday Kagoro, finds himself embroiled in a high-stakes legal battle against his former clients turned adversaries, China Railway No3 Engineering Group. The dispute centers around a six billion shillings bill Kagoro claims he is owed for assisting the Chinese company in securing compensation from another firm that had irregularly been granted their road construction tender by the government.
Practicing with the esteemed firm of Muwema and Company Advocates, Kagoro alleges that the Chinese company sought his legal expertise to navigate the compensation process. However, the Chinese argue that his services were only worth five million shillings, a sum that Kagoro vehemently dismisses as an insult to his professionalism.
He asserts that he invested countless hours of hard work, burning the midnight oil to meticulously prepare and organize paperwork, ultimately securing a handsome compensation payout for the Chinese company. The matter is currently being heard at the Civil High Court’s Division in Kampala, with Justice Boniface Wamala presiding over the case.
However, before the court can fully address the dispute, Kagoro has expressed grave concerns that the Chinese may be plotting to flee the country. Kagoro’s fears stem from a previous incident where the Chinese allegedly attempted to deceive the government into granting them compensation in his absence.
The lawyer had to intervene and utilize his negotiation skills to ensure the rightful payment was secured through the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Authority (PPDA). “By trying to delay the conclusion of this matter, the Chinese are clearly trying to buy time and escape Uganda’s court jurisdiction without fulfilling their obligations to me,” Kagoro revealed to our reporter after a recent court appearance.
The lawyer further emphasizes that the case revolves around a contractual agreement for legal fees owed to him by the Chinese company, and there should be no need for unnecessary prolongation of the proceedings since they have failed to compensate him as agreed. Justice Wamala has instructed both parties to file written submissions, and each will have the opportunity to review the other’s submissions before court reconvenes on October 2, 2023.
Given the sensitive nature of the case and Kagoro’s concerns about the potential flight of the Chinese opponents, the legal community and the public await the court’s decision with great anticipation. The outcome of this trial may have significant implications for the legal profession’s integrity and may set a precedent for dealing with similar disputes involving foreign entities operating in Uganda.
It all began around a decade ago when the directors of China Railway No3 Engineering Group approached the now-defunct Muwema and Mugerwa Co. Advocates to register their company in Uganda and seek legal counsel for their business operations. Kagoro, renowned for his expertise, handled the registration process and became the focal person for the company’s legal affairs in Uganda.
Things took a turn when the company participated in bidding for road construction projects in Hoima, Fort Portal, and Kasese. Despite submitting the lowest bid, they were passed over in favor of a competitor with a substantially higher bid. Convinced that the decision was unfair, China Railway No3 Engineering Group instructed Kagoro to challenge the process and seek justice through PPDA’s Appeals Tribunal.
Kagoro diligently pursued multiple petitions and appeals, arguing that awarding the contract to a higher bidder would lead to a significant loss of funds that could have been avoided with due diligence. However, despite his efforts, the first attempts to petition and appeal were unsuccessful. At this point, the successful bidder reportedly saw an opportunity to resolve the matter by compensating China Railway No3 Engineering Group, seemingly to protect their interests and avoid potential legal repercussions.
The Chinese company, having reached an agreement with their competitor, attempted to withdraw the petitions filed by Kagoro on their behalf. The PPDA Appeals Tribunal, however, informed them that they could not withdraw the case without Kagoro’s involvement. The lawyer then facilitated the formal withdrawal and presented an invoice for his services rendered during the lengthy legal process.
To Kagoro’s dismay, the Chinese company disputed the amount on the invoice, offering less only UGX5M as compensation. This amount was far from the value he believed his professional services deserved, considering the complexity and time invested in the case. Feeling undervalued and unappreciated, Kagoro now finds himself at odds with his former clients, who since took the matter to the Law Council Tribunal.
They claimed that he billed them for work he was not officially instructed to perform, further complicating an already contentious situation. The legal battle has now reached the Civil Division of the High Court. As the case unfolds, legal experts, the business community, and the public closely follow the proceedings, eager to see how this intricate dispute will be resolved.
Kagoro, known for his legal prowess, is determined to defend his reputation and ensure that his professional services are justly compensated. Meanwhile, China Railway No3 Engineering Group faces the challenge of substantiating their claims while navigating the intricacies of the legal system.
The outcome of this legal clash could have significant ramifications for both parties involved, setting a precedent for future fee disputes and potentially impacting the relationship between lawyers and their clients in the business community. As the trial commences, stakeholders await the court’s decision, hoping for a fair resolution that upholds the integrity of legal practice in Uganda.
- Mr. Jacko David Waluluka is another unique entertainment and general investigative news writer, a field he has diligently covered for over fifteen years. He’s also the Chief Administrator at The Investigator. He can easily be reached via [email protected]
- BusinessSeptember 25, 2023Tenterhooks as High Court Stays Ruling on Halting Lawyer Felix Kintu Nteza`s UGX195M Fraud Case Proceedings at Buganda Road Magistrates Court
- Crime newsSeptember 24, 2023Trouble as Ministry of Internal Affairs is drawn into a High-Stakes Child Custody Battle Involving a Prominent City Car Dealer being Accused of Immigration Influence
- EntertainmentSeptember 18, 2023Fare Thee Well Darling: Delicately Voiced Singer Evelyn Nakabira ‘Lagu’ Goes Home Sad and Disappointed but with a Hope-filled Smile
- BusinessSeptember 18, 2023Micho: The `Serbian Wol-Off`s Second Marriage Whose Divorce was Simply a Waste of Time, One With Magogo and Not for Football