City businessman Haruna Sentongo has got some relief after the court of appeal last week stopped the sale of his properties over a shs10.3 billion bank loan.
The young tycoon dragged the former Orient Bank, now I&M to court to stop them from proceeding to auction properties that are now a subject of a loan recovery dispute.
The battle stems from two cases in 2008 and 2019, in which Mr Sentongo and Orient bank had counter sued each other over various loan facilities executed in 2015 to finance the development of Nakayiza Mall and importance of garments. Haruna is a renown property developer especially in DownTown Kampala, particularly, the Kisenyi area.
The two cases were decided in Orient’s favour with then trial judge Richard Wejuli Wabwire ordering Mr Sentongo to repay sh10.3 billion a decision which he appealed.
Justice Wabwire had also awarded Orient sh150 million in damages and interest of above 22 per cent from default until payment.
However, in an injunction Justice Christopher Gashirabake of the Court of Appeal stopped the intended auction after conditions for the grant of an interim order of stay of execution had been fulfilled.
“it is my considered view that taxation of the bill of costs is the first step to realization of the fruits of a judgement. Execution without taxation would be premature. In the instant case, it is not in dispute that the bill of costs and the same has been fixed for hearing. I find that (Sentongo) has proved that there is a serious threat of execution,” he ruled.
On December 23,2022 Justice Wabwire had ruled on a consolidated case, in which Mr Sentongo had accused Orient of extortion, duress, undue influence, and dishonesty for contracting him into credit facilities with unfair and unclear terms.
“The conduct of (Orient)…complicated (Sentongo’s) performance and exposed him to excessive source of income, the risk to exposure, psychological torture and mental anguish,” documents filed in the commercial division of the High Court then, read in part, further showing that Mr Sentongo had sought special damages of sh500 million for loss of business, rental income and dismissal of Orient’s claims, of which were dismissed.
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