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    We Will Drag You To Court And Find Someone Else – Museveni Threatens French Oil Giant Total Energies; We Must Deal With Oil Problem Now, Before A Disaster Unfolds – Besigye…

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    L-R: Total CEO Patrick Pouyanné, Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni

    A furious President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has threatened to sue French oil giant Total Energies SE if they follow the European Union Parliament Resolution and halt the construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP).

    While meeting NRM parliamentary caucus at Kololo Airstrip today, Museveni warned that if Total Energies make any mistake of pulling out of the agreement, they signed with Ugandan government, to facilitate the construction of pipeline, they are ready to drag them to the international court of arbitration.

    Sources who attended the meeting told theGrapevine that Museveni advised the legislators not to waste their time discussing the resolutions passed by the European parliament.

    Museveni later tweeted, “The remarks of the Deputy Speaker and the Attorney General in one of the dailies concerning the EU Parliament and EACOP interested me in making some comments of reassurance to our people.

    “I want to assure you that the project shall proceed as stipulated in the contract we have with TotalEnergies and CNOOC. We should remember that Total Energies convinced me about the Pipeline idea; if they choose to listen to the EU Parliament, we shall find someone else to work with.”

    The President added that either way,  Uganda will have its oil coming out by 2025 as planned.

    On Thursday, the European Parliament expressed concern over violations of human rights linked to investments in fossil fuels projects especially the East African Crude Oil Pipeline in Uganda and Tanzania.

    “Parliament expresses grave concern about arrests, intimidation and judicial harassment against human rights defenders and NGOs working in the oil and gas sector in Uganda, and calls on the authorities to immediately release anyone arrested arbitrarily.

    The European Parliament further stated that more than 100,000 people are at imminent risk of displacement due to the EACOP project, with inefficient guarantees of adequate compensation. The European parliament urged Total Energies to study the feasibility of an alternative route for the project to better protect sensitive ecosystems and the water resources of lakes in Uganda and Tanzania.

    However, it should be noted that the Southern route to Tanzania was chosen in 2016 as the least costly route due to among others least environmental footprint.

    Yesterday, Ugandan MPs led by Deputy Speaker of parliament Thomas Tayebwa blasted the European Parliament accusing them of violating Uganda’s rights as a sovereign state.

    LET US DEAL WITH OIL PROBLEMS NOW BEFORE DISASTER FALLS

    Four-time presidential candidate, Dr. Kizza Besigye has asked the government of Uganda to deal with the oil problems now before the natural resource becomes a curse to Uganda like in many Africa countries.

    Through his twitter account, Dr. Besigye said that the causative factors of why oil hasn’t benefitted the greatest majority of people in Africa’s Oil exporting countries are all more than present in Uganda.

    “Why hasn’t Oil benefitted the greatest majority of people in Africa’s Oil exporting countries? The causative factors are all more than present in Uganda! We must deal squarely with them NOW, before a disaster unfolds,” he revealed.

    He added, “These are Africa’s Oil-exporting countries; Niger exporting lowest quantity and Angola exporting highest by this year; Niger, Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Cameroon, Chad, Sudan and Southern Sudan, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Republic of Congo, Gabon, Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Nigeria, Angola.”

    When a one Sabune on Twitter asked Besigye, “how come those countries have the best presidents yet they have failed to get anything good with their oil especially Ghana,” Besigye responded that Ghana has been exporting oil for only about 12 years but it is performing better than most countries.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki and Kalamira Hope

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    Desperate Housewife Blocks Tropical Bank From Selling Matrimonial Home Over Shs.2.9bn Debt…

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    Muhammed Hala, the wife to a city businessman has blocked Tropical Bank from selling their matrimonial home over Shs2.9bn debt.

    She petitioned the High Court Commercial Division challenging the actions of the bank threatening to put their matrimonial home on the market through advertising it in the media without her knowledge.

    In her affidavit, Hala insisted that her husband Muhammed Tariq, of Sudan origin mortgaged their matrimonial home sitting on plot 195 Kawempe Division Kampala City to Tropical bank without her consent as stipulated by law as a spouse and she only learnt about it through media.

    She explained that as a wife, her children don’t have where to go if the said house is put on auction and sold.

    She pleaded with Court to issue a temporary injunction stopping the bank, its agents from going on with their planned move to auction their home.

    Juliet Hatanga, the Deputy Registrar of the High Court Commercial Division agreed with the applicant and stopped the sale of the house until the entire petition is heard and determined.

    “I find it necessary to grant the application of the temporary injunction pursuant to regulation 13(4) of the Mortgage Regulations,” she ruled.

    She however directed the applicant to deposit in Court 30% of the forced sale value of the mortgage property within 45 days from the day of the ruling.

    theGrapevine has established that Hala has deposited in Court her land title comprising Kyadondo Block 107 plot 148 Nakyesanja, Wakiso district, which is valued Shs.1.49bn.

    In 2015, Tariq obtained the Shs.8bn loan using his matrimonial home and their family property on plot 5 Luthuli Drive in Kampala city but failed to service his loan which resulted in bank’s actions to auction the said properties.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    SIMBAMANYO SAGA: Tycoons Sudhir, Luwangula, Equity Bank, Top Judges, Lawyers In Bitter Fight Over Shs.40bn Deal…

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    Tucoons Peter Kamya (top L) and Sudhir Ruparelia (bottom L) and Justice Stephen Mubiru (R)

    On Thursday, Justice Stephen Mubiru, the Head of the High Court Commercial Division dismissed with costs two applications filed by Equity bank Uganda Ltd, Meera Investments Ltd, Luwaluwa Investments and Katende Ssempebwa and Company Advocate seeking stay of the proceedings challenging the process followed during the selling and buying of multibillion properties belonging to city businessman Peter Kamya.

    Kamya, through his lawyers led by commercial law giant Ebert Byenkya filed an application for discovery of e-mails and bank accounts of the defendants insisting that they are very crucial in prosecuting their matter and will help Court to deliver a fair decision which the defendants strongly objected to.

    In his affidavit to support his application, Kamya told Court that he received detailed information from a whistleblower that there was a lot of syndicate and communication between the defendants which resulted into a bribe of USD1.8million exchanging hands to defraud the system so that he loses his Simbamanyo building on Lumumba Avenue Kampala which was sold to Meera Investments Limited and his Afrique Suits on Mutungo hill which was sold to Luwaluwa Investments limited by Equity bank.

    Kamya claims that Ronald Luwangula, the proprietor of Luwaluwa Investment connived with lawyers and Equity bank officials to defraud the process.

    He detailed that Luwangula borrowed money from equity bank under the guise of shipping his goods which were stuck in Japan.

    But when the bank gave him the money, he sold his building in Wandegeya and added the money onto the bank loan and ended up buying his Afrique Suits.

    He added that the lawyers masterminded the entire fraud by illegally advising Sudhir to transfer his Simbamanyo building in minutes after signing purchase agreement with equity bank and the transaction was done during 2020 Covid-19 Lockdown.

    Byenkya based his case on a Supreme Court judgment which states that whenever there is any fraud in the process a transaction, the entire transaction is declared illegal.

    The defendants rubbished the plaintiff’s case insisting that he failed to service his USD10 million debt that resulted in auctioning his properties which he used as security.

    Sources at the Commercial Court told theGrapevine that the defendants petitioned Justice Rubby Aweri Opio, the Chief Inspector of Courts after Justice Mubiru took almost two months without hearing their two applications to appeal in the Court of Appeal challenging his rulings against them.

    The defendants accused Justice Mubiru of being biased and not following the Civil procedures and rules when presiding over the controversial case.

    A source revealed that one of the senior lawyers at Katende Ssempebwa and Company Advocates stormed Justice Mubiru’s chambers pleading with him to allow them to proceed with their appeal.

    “You know that senior lawyer thought that because he was Justice Mubiru’s teacher at the law school (Makerere University) and at the Law Development Center, he will use that background to convince him but the man stood his ground and refused to allow them to appeal against his ruling,” a source said.

    He added that the senior lawyer was very bitter with Justice Mubiru and threatened him that he will soon be forced out of the Commercial Court the way Justice Henry Adonya left after his controversial judgement in Shs.200bn case between Diamond Trust Bank and city tycoon Hamis Kiggundu the proprietor of Ham Enterprises Limited.

    Sources explained that before petitioning Justice Aweri, lawyers petitioned other top judicial officers to intervene in the matter and a number of phone calls were made to Justice Mubiru to change his mind but like Justice Esther Kisakye of the Supreme Court, Justice Mubiru stubbornly responded to his superiors that he swore before the president to deliver justice to all Ugandans without fear or favor.

    The respondents claimed that Kamya’s application was only based on hearsay and if Justice Mubiru’s ruling is not overturned by the Court of Appeal, it will set precedence that any person can come up with a frivolous suit without any evidence of any crime committed demanding to inspect and see another person’s financial statements and other personal records.

    They added that the ruling is very risky to the banking industry and customer’s confidentiality which has to be protected.

    One of the lawyers of the respondents revealed to theGrapevine that there is a lawyer who has been representing Sudhir who leaked vital information to counsel Fred Muwema, one of Kamya’s lawyers.

    And the reason why Kamya’s lawyers are insisting on the emails is because they are sure that whatever the e-mails and bank accounts will reveal, will end the entire case because the whole fraud that led to the execution of the transactions in which their client lost his properties is buried there.

    On 19th September 2022, Justice Aweri wrote to Justice Mubiru directing him to forward the entire Simbamanyo file to him to investigate a number of allegations put against him on the way he presiding the matter.

    “Under Section 9 and 11 of the Administration of the Judiciary Act of 2020, I am writing to immediately call for the entire file and all other applications arising thereunder for our perusal as a matter of urgency,” Justice Aweri’s letter read in parts.

    However, when the matter came up for further hearing, Sim Katende, the lawyer who was in the middle of the entire transaction asked for an adjournment citing Justice Aweri’s letter and noting that their matter is under investigation that is why they cannot proceed which Justice Mubiru rubbished.

    A bitter exchange of words ensued between Justice Mubiru and counsel Katende who threatened to drag the latter to the law council and petition the American Law Council where Katende is a member over his unprofessional and undermining character.

    Katende openly told Justice Mubiru that he is too late to do so because he cannot keep quiet when Courts are doing illegalities.

    In his remarks on Justice Aweri’s letter, Justice Mubiru stated,” If I am to adjourn a case because of an administrative letter, what will I be doing?”

    He insisted that he will not be bound by Justice Aweri’s letter and promised to proceed with the matter to its conclusion.

    Kamya petitioned president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni over the fraudulent sell of his properties and the president directed the Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka and Bank of Uganda to investigate the matter.

    It was established that his properties were legally sold and he was advised to contest the transaction in Courts of law.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    Panic As European Union Parliament Summons TotalEnergies Boss Pouyanne Over Uganda -Tanzania EACOP Project….

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    President Museveni (R) with TotalEnergies boss Patrick Pouyanne (L)

    The European Union Parliament has summoned Patrick Pouyanne, the Chief Executive Officer of TotalEnergies International over Uganda-Tanzania controversial East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project.

    Pouyanne is expected to appear before the European parliament Committee on Environment, food and natural resources committee in early October to defend his company and the partners on allegations put against them concerning the construction of the EACOP.

    The Ugandan government led by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni protested the controversial resolution adopted by the European parliament condemning TotalEnergeyies for investing in a project which involves violation of human rights and the environment.

    The legislators in the European Parliament claimed that in the preparation for the construction of the pipeline, which is set to transport Ugandan oil from Hoima through Tanzania, a number of people have been wrongfully imprisoned including human rights defenders.

    They claimed that over 100,000 people in places where the pipeline is set to pass are at risk of being displaced and evicted from their land without proper procedure of compensating them.

    The legislators also added that the construction of the pipeline is going to lead to destroying the environment because it is going to be pass near lakes, rivers and game reserves.

    However, President Museveni assured Ugandans that the pipeline will be built whether the European parliament wants or not.

    He further warned TotalEnergies that his government is very ready to institute a commercial lawsuit against them since they signed an agreement when entering the deal.

    National Unity Platform (NUP) principal Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine welcomed the move by the European parliament and boasted that the money which was going to be harvested from the country’s oil was going benefit only a few people.

    He revealed that he is among the people who pleaded with the European Parliament to act and also sanction president Museveni and his son like the US did to other security officers over human rights violations.

    It is not yet known whether the European Union will even summon officers in the Ugandan government over the matter.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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