The Commercial court has pushed to next year the hearing of pending applications in the case between Bank of Uganda (BOU) and city property mogul Sudhir Ruparelia over sale of Crane bank to Dfcu bank.
The head of the Commercial court, Justice David Wangutusi deferred the hearing of three applications to January 21, 2019 because Bank of Uganda informed court that they are currently appearing before the parliamentary committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (Cosase) to answer queries raised in auditor general's report on closed banks.
Cosase is currently probing Bank of Uganda officials over irregularities in closure of seven commercial banks. The banks were closed between 1993 and 2016. The banks are; Teefe Trust bank (1993), International Credit bank (1998), Greenland bank (1999), Co-operative bank (1999), National Bank of Commerce (2012), Global Trust bank (2014) and the sale of Crane bank to Dfcu (2016) at Shs 200 billion.
The court had set today for hearing of three pending applications. They include Bank of Uganda's two applications in which it is seeking to amend its pleadings and that in which the central bank wants to be allowed extension of time to file its defence to counter the lawsuit filed against it by Ruparelia.
The third application which was supposed to be heard was filed by Ruparelia, demanding dismissal of Bank of Uganda pleadings. The central bank sued Ruparelia and his Meera Investments Company mid last year, for allegedly fleecing Crane bank of Shs 397 billion in fraudulent transactions and transfers.
Crane bank was taken over by the central bank on October 20, 2016 and later sold to Dfcu bank in 2017. Ruparelia has denied the fraud accusations and instead counter-sued the central bank, seeking compensation of about Shs 28 billion in damages for breach of contract between him and BOU.