Two members of the family of former Rwenzori Diocese Bishop, the late Rt Rev Dr Eustace K Kamanyire, have sued Rwenzori bishop Reuben Kisembo for reportedly taking part in the illegal sale of their father’s land.
Kamanyire’s daughters Joyce Kamanyire Ruhweeza and Ruth Kamanyire Kihumuro accuse Bishop Kisembo and their sister-in-law Patricia Asaba of fraudulently selling the land in Mukono to businessman Wycliff Ntambi.
The land in question is comprised in Kyaggwe Block 107 Plots 2771 and 2772 at Nabuti, Mukono District measuring in total about 0.164 hectares.
Available records indicate that when the Rt Rev Kamanyire, who was Rwenzori Diocese Bishop from 1981 to 2000, died in 2013 died, his son Peter Kamanyire Asaba, brother to Kihumuro and Ruhweeza took over as the legally recognized proprietor of the property.
However, Kamanyire Asaba died.
“The Plaintiffs’ claim against the Defendants [Kisembo, Asaba and Ntambi] jointly and or severally is premised in intermeddling with estate property and trespass to land and the Plaintiffs seek inter alia; a declaration of intermeddling, a nullification order, a declaration of trespass, an eviction order, a permanent injunction, general damages, interest thereon and costs of the suit,” reads the summary of the suit filed in the Mukono High Court by M/S Wetaka, Bukenya & Kizito Advocates, the lawyers of Kamanyire’s daughters, on September 14.
Kamanyire’s daughters allege that trouble started with their brother Peter Asaba’s death.
“Upon Asaba’s death, the first and second Defendants who are aware that the late Kamanyire is survived by the Plaintiffs who are beneficially entitled went on rampage selling various properties including; the grinding machine, the deceased’s motor vehicle and so on, as if it were their personal property; ignoring the Plaintiffs’ beneficial interests in the suit; paying a deaf ear to the Plaintiffs’ protests with respect to his occupation and use of the suit property; refusing to vacate and continuing to undertake hasty constructions on the suit property; generally attempting to defeat the Plaintiffs’ beneficial interests in the suit property.”
Kuhumuro and Ruhweeza further allege that when they learnt that the defendants had intentions and desire to sell off the land, the latter [Ruhweeza] on November 22, 2018, lodged caveats on the suit land.
“Recently in July, 2021 however, the first Plaintiff [Ruhweeza] was shocked when she was incessantly summoned by the first Defendant [Bishop Kisembo] to urgently get in touch with one Esther Kabajungu, a lawyer to ensure removal of her caveats from the suit titles so as to enable the third Defendant [Ntambi] to whom they had sold the suit land get registered as proprietor,” further reads the suit in part.
“The Plaintiffs then made their inquiries which revealed that the first and second Defendants [Kisembo and Asaba] had during the Covid19 lock down purported to sell the suit land to the third Defendant [Ntambi] who is currently undertaking hasty constructions on the suit land.”
Kihumuro and Ruhweeza even reported Asaba and Bishop Kisembo at Mukono Police Station on August 19, 2021.
Their prayers include an eviction order for businessman Ntambi, a permanent injunction against the businessman, general damages directly resulting from the untold inconvenience, anguish, anxiety and loss caused by the conduct of the Bishop Kisembo, Asaba and Ntambi.
They also want court to declare that the suit property belongs to the late Rt Rev Dr Eustace K Kamanyire’s estate to which they are beneficially entitled; that Kisembo, Asaba and Ntambi illegally dealt or intermeddled therewith and have trespassed on the same land, and that all the transactions on the same suit land are null and void.
Pending hearing of the main application before Mukono High Court, Deputy Registrar Mary Ikit has issued orders stopping Ntambi, Asaba and Kisembo from using the suit land.
“An Interim Order doth issue restraining the Respondents, their Agents, Servants and anybody claiming under them from erecting any building or doing any further constructions, renovating, leveling, leasing, registering, mortgaging, or in any other way dealing with the land comprised in Kyaggwe Block 107 Plots 2771 and 2772 Land at Nabuti, Mukono District measuring in total about 0.164 hectares until the disposal of the Main Application,” directed Ikit.
Efforts to reach Bishop Kisembo were futile but he has been quoted by local media as saying that he will wait for his turn in court where he will defend himself, and was not willing to discuss the matter in the media.