By Watchdog reporter

Cabinet Minister for Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities Ephraim Kamuntu has warned the public against speculation over the ongoing Crane Bank saga especially about reports that plans are underway to takeover Speke Resort Munyonyo owned by property mogul Sudhir Ruparelia.

While speaking at the launch of Uganda Giant’s Conservation and Tourism Investment Forum on Wednesday at State House,  Prof Kamuntu said there’s no such a move of taking over the lucrative business asset thus warning the public to separate Crane Bank from Speke Resort.

He said government will protect the hotel to avoid disruption of the hospitality industry.

“Government will protect the hotel to avoid disruption of Hospitality,” he said.

Last week on Thursday, New Vision reported that Sudhir had agreed to surrender some of his prime properties which included Speke Resort to Bank of Uganda to settle the shs400 billion bank fraud case out of court.

“Impeccable sources privy to the matter told New Vision yesterday that Sudhir has written to the BOU, saying he will surrender his prime property; Speke Resort and Conference Centre, a five-star hotel. He has also offered to surrender his shareholding in Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort, which he jointly owns with the Government, though he is the majority shareholder,” As quoted from New Vision newspaper.

Prof Kamuntu, whose tourism docket, struggles to market Uganda as a destination for tourism investment particularly in conference tourism as well as the accommodation niche, knows more than anyone that Speke Resort is at the centre of the tourism of this calibre and should be shielded from the storm sweeping through the banking sector.

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