By Lawrence Kazooba
The last two years have disrupted many things including the wealth of the rich class.
Among the wealthy who had invested in the travel, hospitality, entertainment, fashion, education, etc, have had their wealth creation eaten into – while the 2021 wealthy list favours those who invested in technology, real estate, health, food, logistics etc, have had their wealth multiply.
Uganda’s new list of the wealthiest, according to sources, has also changed tremendously with big names such as Patrick Bitature, Charles Mbire, John Ssebalamu among others, dropping off the top 10 as previously reported.
The new wealth list favors those in real estate, particularly, those in commercial buildings in big cities, particularly Kampala.
1. John Bosco Muwonge
John Bosco Muwonge tops the list of wealthiest. He is an allusive billionaire who is rarely seen in public. Muwonge makes all the money and takes it all. Unlike billionaires such as Sudhir Ruparelia who spends a lot on social causes in his charity and corporate social responsibility activities, Mr Muwonge collects a lot of money from his many commercial buildings in Kampala’s central business district – and focuses on the build.
Mr Muwonge, has multiplied his stake in Kampala’s CBD in the past couple of years and owns Namanda, Cooper complex, Cornerstone, Discount mall, Shamba complex, Shauriyako ggagawala, Namayiba bus terminal, Gwanda mall Kisenyi, Superior complex, New Arua park complex, he has a street in Nabugabo, and has over 40 construction sites in Kampala, plus over 400 acres of land in Kisenyi area. Muwonge could be valued at usd1.8 billion.
2. Sudhir Ruparelia
Sudhir Ruparelia has sat on top of Uganda’s rich list for a long time. He has over 17 companies under his Ruparelia Group with interests in hospitality, real estate, finance, media, insurance, education, agriculture, labour export among others.
Sudhir got a setback with Bank of Uganda grabbed his Crane bank from him and later Covid19 affected his massive investments in the hospitality, education, and flower sectors. On top of that – Sudhir has not stopped his support for charitable works and other social causes. However, Sudhir has continued to invest in upscale accommodations and office spaces, as well as commercial buildings in DownTown Kampala. Sudhir however has maintained his Forbes net worth of USD1.2 billion.
3. Drake Lubega
Drake Lubega owns Qualicel BUS TERMINAL, Totali building, Kikuubo buildings, buildings at Nakivubo blue, Mini Price buildings among others in Downtown Kampala. It is said Lubega builds or buys a new building of not less than USD7 million, every 6 months – with money he collects from rent.
Drake is worth USD1 billion.
Mukwano family has diversified investments in agriculture, manufacturing, transport, food processing, and real estate. They sit comfortably in Number 4 position.
5. Karim Hirji
Karim Hirji has lost been affected by Covid19 pandemic owing to his investments in the hospitality industry. However, real estate remains the backbone still holding his wealthy position.
6. Kitandwe Tom
Kitandwe Tom is one of the businessmen who grew their empires from Kikuubo as a wheat agent. He now boasts of buildings including Giant shopping arcade in Kikuubo, Nakasero complex on Nakivubo road, Mid city arcade on Nakivubo road, Mackay Buildings on Old Rashid Kaharmis Road among others. He has also raised buildings at Arua park, Parkyard, and behind Gazaland.
7. Hamis Kiggundu
This is the first time Hamis Kiggundu appears on this list of the top 10 wealthy Ugandans. The outspoken young tycoon is said to be collecting not less than USD1 million a month. Hamis has invested in real estate, agro-processing, education, technology among others.
8. Christine Nabukeera
Christine Nabukeera is known among the rich circles as Senga Nabukeera. She is also one of the property moguls in Kampala. She is said to be the pillar on which her relatives including John Sebalamu, John Bosco Muwonge and Haruna Segawa, built their wealth. Nabukeera owns Kisekka Auto center plaza, Victor plaza in Kikuubo, Nana arcade in Nabugabo among others.
9. John Sebalamu
John Sebalamu owns Freedom city, Capital House, Naiga Chambers, and several other prominent properties.
10. Haruna Sentongo
Haruna Sentongo is another new entrant on the top 10 wealth list.
Haruna and his brother Hamis are young businessmen who have used their family business experience to invest wisely and grow their wealth. Today, Haruna owns Nakayiza market with 12 blocks, Haruna Towers in Kisenyi, NM apartments, Old Africana agro market, Segawa market which has two blocks, he has new coming up in Kisenyi, four acres of undeveloped land in the same area, Haruna shopping mall, Haruna towers Ntinda, trading under his Haruna enterprises. Analysts say Haruna strategy has been to turn Mengo Kisenyi into a premier business center.
Haruna's aim is to turn the Kisenyi surbubs onto a new Kampala since the population is already there he is mainly based in agro markets for agro stores for all agro produce in uganda. He is building warehouses for agro produce sales and rents them out. He has over a thousand agro stores in Kisenyi and sources say this is attracting Kikuubo based businesses.