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South Sudan Traders Plead with Banks to Halt Loan Repayments :: Uganda Radionetwork
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South Sudan Traders Plead with Banks to Halt Loan Repayments

Omara said that banks have begun to auction property and penalize the traders. He appealed to the MPs to write to the Bank of Uganda directing it to reign on the commercial banks.
A section of South Sudan traders appearing before the Parliament Select Committee.

Audio 3


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Ugandan traders that supplied goods but were not paid following the outbreak of war in South Sudan want parliament to stop Commercial Banks from auctioning their property for defaulting loan payments.

On Thursday, they appeared before the select committee set up by Parliament to investigate the payment of 41 billion Shillings to 10 Ugandan companies out of 33 that Parliament had approved.

The ten companies include; Rubya Investments, Kibungo Entreprises, Aponye (U) Ltd, Afro Kai ltd, Swift commodities establishment ltd, Sunrise commodities, Sophie Omari, Apo General Agencies, Ropani International and KK Travellers.  

Others that were not included on the list include; Roko Construction Company, Ake-jo General enterprise, JB Traders, Odyek Ejang Company, Dott Services, Gunya company limited, Premier company, MFK company among others.  

The process is part of a request by the Ugandan government for parliamentary approval, to clear a debt of 151 billion Shillings owed to Ugandan traders and companies by the South Sudan government. The traders supplied goods and services from 2008 but were never paid following the conflict that started in 2013.  

Led by their chairman Geoffrey Okwir and Secretary John Bosco Omara, the traders told MPs of the Select Committee Chaired by Kyankwanzi Woman MP Ann Maria Nankabirwa that the commercial banks are forcefully seeking loan repayments when they heard that money had been paid and yet the traders had been unfairly left out of compensation.  

Omara said that banks have begun to auction property and penalize the traders. He appealed to the MPs to write to the Bank of Uganda directing it to reign on the commercial banks.  

//Cue in: “marriages have broken 

Cue out...ministry of trade.”//  

Masaka Municipality MP Mathias Mpuuga noted that if the government made a commitment to pay the traders and failed to fulfil the promise, then it is liable and must pay for the loss of property. 

//Cue in: “because then we...

Cue out...the House lost.”//  

The traders also accused the Finance Minister Matia Kasaija of being cruel and arrogant. Okwir told the MPs that during a meeting with Kasaija, he harshly asked them why they had gone to do business in South Sudan.

The traders want the compensation process be done by the Ministry of Trade since the Trade Minister Amelia Kyambadde is sympathetic to their plight.   

//Cue in: “we are tired...

Cue out...are very arrogant.”//

South Sudan and Uganda then entered into a mutual agreement which could see Uganda clear the debt and treat it as a loan to the government of South Sudan. The money will be paid back within five to 10 years with a six per cent interest rate after the first year.              

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