COVID 19 impact: Landlord evicts school over unpaid rent arrears

HOIMA -The impact of Covid-19 has started to bite in Hoima as Bright Children Nursery and Primary School was evicted over rent areas accumulated over the lockdown.

Bright Children Nursery School is located in Kiryateete, Hoima West City division in Hoima City.

The conflict erupted after the schools officially opened on Monday 10th of this month and registered a good number of pupils.

The Landlord Denis Kaija, asked the School Director, Gerald Mugabi to relocate his school from his structures over failure to pay rent arrears amounting to Shs 30 million which was accrued during the Covid-19 lockdown. For the past two years, the landlord says, Mugabi has never paid a single coin for rent to him.

Kaija issued an eviction notice to the School Director through Majimoto Auctioneers and Court Bailiffs to evict Bright Children Nursery and Primary School from his buildings.

Kaija explains that Mugabi started renting at his premises in 2016. According to the tenancy agreement, Mugabi was meant to stop using the structures in 2020 but the landlord says, his tenant has continued to use the structures even before renewing his tenancy.

When Mugabi failed to pay, Kaija sought police intervention last year where Mugabi agreed that the school will be relocated by November 30, 2021 which has not been done.

He noted that, it was surprising that Mugabi is still operating and recruiting children in his buildings despite failing to honour the agreement.

However, Director Mugabi says, he did not leave the premises because the Landlord also failed to fulfill the agreement they made while at police.

He noted that, the landlord was supposed to pay the school Shs 2million as compensation for some structures that were set up by the school at the site.

He added that if the Landlord had complied, they would have shifted to another place. “Tenant Mugabi / director of Bright Children Nursery and Primary School, is ready to leave so long as the Landlord meets what we signed while at Hoima police,” said Mugabi.

But Kaija rubbished the claims of his tenant saying, his efforts to pay Mugabi the Shs2m have yielded no fruits since Mugabi has always failed to honor the invitation to pick his money.

He further noted that several times he has tried to give Mugambi the Shs2m so that he can vacate his building but Mugabi keeps dodging him.

Kaija also noted that, he has involved several offices including the Hoima City Education department but they have not helped and this forced him to resort to forceful eviction of Mugabi from his buildings since he is unable to pay.

He noted that Hoima City is demanding him Shs5.7 million, property tax and he is unable to pay since his tenant has failed to pay him his rent arrears.

Denis Asiimwe, a Court Bailiff from Majimoto Auctioneers and Court Bailiffs said, the school was closed last week but Mugabi illegally broke the seals and gained access into the structures.

He demanded him to return the 15 padlocks which he broke before any action is taken against him.

Johnson Kusiima Baingana, the Hoima Oil City Principal Education Officer says, his office has received several complaints over the school and promised to make a follow up.

The government through the Ministry of Education and Sports had earlier directed all the Landlords to pardon school owners rent arrears accumulated during a two year lockdown; Landlords say that they are also between a rock and had place.

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