KAMPALA – Buganda Road Chief Magistrates Court has ordered the Managing Director of Standard Chartered Bank to appear in court on August 5 to explain why he refused to grant information to their client about his bank account or face jail.
Ahmed Noor Osman, one of the co-owners of Habib Oil Ltd, last week sued three bank officers alongside the MD for allegedly refusing to provide him information about his outstanding loan balance and yet still went ahead to attach his property for sale, claiming he failed to pay the debt.
Whereas the officials were supposed to appear in court on Thursday, July 5, the bank MD did not show up. This angered the magistrate, who threatened to issue him with an arrest warrant.
However, his lawyers prayed for an adjournment, promising to appear on August 5. Meanwhile, the DPP has also allowed to be part of the case, arguing that the matter is of public interest.
The bank staff including the MD Albert Salton, and others — Winnie Ojambo and Julius Baluku from Standard Chartered Bank Speke Road Branch are wanted in court on to answer charges of unauthorised obstruction of the use of computer contrally to Section 16 of the Computer Misuse Act 2011.
According to court documents filed on June 29, the bank was demanding for $3.8m and another $394,657 in unpaid loan balance from Ahmed Noor Osman of Habib Oil, who has held a dollar account in the bank for 7 years.
The money was accumulated between 2013 and 2016. Osman in turn requested the bank for financial statements from 2013-2016 to establish the exact loan balance and the interest rate at which the loan was given. He also requested for a proper audit of his account to determine the outstanding loan balance.
However, Osman says whereas he requested the bank for this information on May 28, 2018, it refused to grant it to him and still went ahead to announce that they were attaching his properties on Plot 18 Wampewo Avenue, Plot 109 on Sir Apollo Kaggwa Road and Plots 114-176 on Bunyonyi drive Kiswa in Kampala.
In the suit filed through his lawyers of Muwema & Company Advocates, Osman says he also notified the town clerk at Kampala Capital City Authority about the refusal to grant him the information about his loan balance by the bank.
He now wants the court to declare the move to attach his property illegal and compel the bank to release details on the interest rate at which the loan was computed and given to him.
Meanwhile, Osman through his lawyers of Muwema and Company Advocates has placed a caveat on the properties attached by the bank and warned the public against purchasing them until the dispute with the bank is disposed of.