It’s baffling that senior lawyers don’t know they are conflicted – Sudhir says of Sebalu and Lule on Crane Management vs DFCU case 

Sudhir with son Rajiv Ruparelia speaks to journalists outside Commercial Court.

Tycoon Sudhir Ruparelia on the sidelines of the hearing of a conflict of interest case between his Crane Management Services and Sebalu & Lule Co. Advocates wondered how senior lawyers cannot tell when they are conflicted and stay away from a case.

“This is greed. It is a very simple case of conflict of interest. If a lawyer who has done all these degrees doesn’t know he is conflicted, I don’t know who will,” Sudhir said outside court this morning.

The case that was set for hearing today could not go on after it emerged that the judge handling the matter, Justice David Wangutusi is unwell.

Court registrar Festo Nsenga adjourned the matter to March 1, 2019.

Background to the case

Sebalu & Lule Co. Advocates is currently representing DFCU Bank in a series of multi-billion cases before the commercial court, where businessman Sudhir through his companies has sued the bank for illegal possession/ trespass on his properties and breach of contract. The cases are in relation to DFCU’s takeover of Crane Bank.

Sudhir’s Crane Management Services argues that the law firm worked for them previously and have a lot of confidential information that could jeopardise their case if they continue representing DFCU. They want a permanent injunction against their participation in the case as defence counsel to DFCU Bank.  

Sudhir has already won another conflict of interest case in the same court after Justice Wangutusi ruled that MMAKS Advocates and AF Mpanga Advocates who had been Sudhir’s lawyers for over a decade could not represent Bank of Uganda against him.