Flanked by his lawyer, the businessman rubbished the testimony of George Wakanyira, who testified on Monday
Businessman Ben Kavuuya has told land probe commission, that many loan defaulters willingly sell their land, to keep uncompromising banks at bay.
Kavuuya made the remarks on Tuesday, at the probe’s public hearing in Kampala. He was responding to allegations that he grabbed prime land of George Wakanyira in the city suburbs of Bugolobi and Bweyogerere.
Flanked by his lawyer Peter Nkurunziza, the proprietor of money lending firm Legacy Credit, he rubbished the testimony of Wakanyira, who testified on Monday.
Wakanyira purported that in February 2007, he sought a loan from Kavuuya, when Housing Finance Bank had listed his property in Kataza, Bugolobi, for sale after a loan default.
Asked by deputy lead counsel John Bosco Suuza whether he knew Wakanyira, Kavuuya stated that an immensely miserable Wakanyira actually propositioned him in January 2007, and begged him to buy both properties.
“His properties were under stress from Housing Finance Bank. He came to me with a view to sell, and we agreed. He offered to sell both properties at sh300m. I agreed to pay the mortgage, and Wakanyira wrote to the bank informing them formally,” Kavuuya stated.
Documents show Kavuuya paid the bank and gave Wakanyira the balance of sh113m.
The estate developer submitted proof of contract, and validity of title purchase. These were a letter to the bank introducing him (Kavuuya), sale agreement showing Wakanyira handing over to Kavuuya, and also a power of attorney.
When Suuza asked whether Wakanyira was lying and suggested madness, Kavuuya replied that Wakanyira was totally deceitful.
The rancher also submitted evidence in the form of a judgement, when he was absolved of any wrongdoing after Wakanyira sued in 2007 at the Commercial Court.
Kavuuya slammed Wakanyira, saying he was scapegoating and hiding behind the veil of hopelessness.
“I have dealt with people of repute. The word desperate is relative. I have dealt with several people. I am a credible person. People have commended me after I have saved them,” stated Kavuuya.
Kulambiro land fraud
Suuza asked the rancher to respond to allegations of fraudulent purchase of a two-acre property in the city suburb of Kulambiro.
The estate of Fenecantine Kityo is claiming ownership. One of the beneficiaries, Nelson Ddumba, has since testified.
Kavuuya dismissed the fraud claims as utterly baseless. He presented court pronouncements, indicating he was cleared.
He maintained that he was a bona fide purchaser for value without notice and that if there was fraud, he was not a party to it.
“Not at any one time have I been accused of fraud in this. The person who sold me the land Hajji Zed Kezimbira, was acquitted of fraud by magistrate Esta Nambayo. Also, Frederick Ssenyonga who sold to Kezimbira, was acquitted of fraud by Justice Lugayizi,” stated Kavuuya.
“I am being accused by a third party, of which I was never part of. If it was Hajji Kezimbira complaining, then it would be logical.”
Last week, the Kondogolo village chairperson Canaan Luboyera, testified that Kavuuya did not conduct due diligence to ascertain the land ownership.
In his response on Wednesday, the businessman emphasised that to the best of his knowledge, he conducted due diligence which did not necessitate Luboyera’s input.
He also poured scorn on the testimony of land broker Ignatius Tumwesiga who testified against him.
Kavuuya dismissed him as one on a revenge mission. He said Tumwesiga had defaulted on loan payments, and that he had been blacklisted by the Credit Reference Bureau.