By John Kazooba
The economy is not doing well. Fine. It is time to be prudent, individually and as companies.
However, the custodians of public funds such as banks should at all times be very prudent.
I sympathise with the owners, depositors and suppliers of Crane bank. However, information coming out of Crane chambers show Sudhir Ruparelia, the face of the bank that was taken over by the Central Bank, personally contributed to the sinking of Crane Bank ship because of his influence on management and personal dealings.
Sudhir, who lives like a king, is a wealthy man who has spent lavishly to not only finance his daughters’ marriages in expensive hotels in Europe, but also to build a multi million home, build several commercial buildings and purchase every open space he lands on including Namulonge research institute land, CMI plots in Kampala, school playgrounds like Kitante among others.
Sudhir might be rich. But there’s a stop to purchasing power visavis anyone’s cash flow. Maybe it was greed, powered by money from the bank’s customers.
In Governor Emmanuel Mutebile’s admission, the bank owners were directly interfering with the bank’s operations for personal gain.
Now, many things are at stake, but most urgently, deposits of the public in the bank, the Central Uganda has taken control of. It’s abuse of trust and confidence that Crane owners indulged in, but walk away with out anyone touching them. Elsewhere, Sudhir and his managers should be in jail for money laundering, forgery and abuse of public funds.
Soon, businesses that were depending on Crane Bank will start to suffer the consequences, or even close. And that’s why individuals that messed up Crane bank cannot be let off the hook.
For mismanaging and misappropriation of public funds, the face of Crane bank billionaire Sudhir Ruparelia should therefore be in jail.