The suitor who wants to build an airport at Mumias Sugar

The suitor who wants to build an airport at Mumias Sugar

Businessman Julius Mwale. [Courtesy] Forget getting bankrupt Mumias Sugar Company out of the intensive care unit – that will be the easier part for businessman Julius Mwale.

In court documents, the flashy investor told the KCB Group-appointed receiver manager Pongangipalli Venkata Ramana Rao that if given the opportunity to lease the assets of the sugar miller, he would also develop an airport in Mumias sub-county within the first four years.

The airport would be built at a cost of $20 million (Sh2.3 billion).

Currently, the only airport in the county is Kakamega Airstrip, which is being upgraded by the Kenya Airports Authority to accommodate bigger aircraft.

And the icing on the cake does not end with the airport: Mr Mwale has also promised to build an agricultural university and a sugar-themed resort at a cost of Sh2.3 billion should his company, Tumaz & Tumaz Enterprises, be awarded the contract.

The Kakamega-born businessman, who has since moved to court to contest the award of the contract to Uganda’s Sarrai Group , had offered to pay Sh27.6 billion for the lease.

However, the receiver manager noted that Tumaz could not raise a bid bond of Sh500 million, which Mr Rao said was a precondition for proceeding to the second stage of the bidding process.

Mwale argues that the awarding of the contract was not done transparently and that it was shrouded in secrecy.

Besides rehabilitating the golf course at Mumias Sugar, he also promised to construct new residential homes and a hospital should he be given an opportunity to get the miller out of a coma.

Mwale describes himself as a successful industrial entrepreneur and investor with more than 20 years of proven track record in innovative investments in technology, energy, retail and construction industries.

He is the investor behind the $2 billion (Sh226 billion) Mwale Medical and Technology City based in Western Kenya. This, his firm says, is a 5,000-bed “world class hospital” that has been open since 2019, serving more than 35,000 residents.“Additionally, it is a major partner for championship golf course and gold club, a modern supermarket, restaurants, a technology park, a digital e-commerce platform,” says Mwale in court documents.He told the court that his educational background is in telecommunications engineering, and in the early 2000s he founded and chaired SBA Technologies Inc, a New York-based company that pioneered the use of string biometric security that was later used for digital ID verification worldwide.In court documents, Mwale says […]

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