Kwame Ismail Nkurunziza
People who run businesses or have offices at Haruna Shopping Mall have a reason breathe a huge sigh of relief, after city tycoon Haruna Sentongo announced Monday morning that he has waived 6 months’ worth of rent arrears.
Businessman Ssentongo, the younger brother of tycoon Hamis Kiggundu aka Ham, says efforts to get tenants to pay have proved difficult because of a prevailing harsh business environment and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy.
Talking to journalists at his office, Ssentongo said he has lost over one billion shillings in rent between May and October as result of tenants’ inability to pay because of the COVID pandemic effects.
The tycoon in his mid-30s who has over 500 tenants all over the city, announced that he had pardoned 120 tenants and pushing tenants out is bad for business.
Ssentongo, who started as a dealer in imported clothes, comes from a prominent family of property owners.
His father Haruna Ssegawa is the brother of other prominent business personalities like John Ssebalamu, John Bosco Muwonge, and Ms Christine Nabukera originally from Kasanje, Kalungu district.
Ssentongo’s father Segawa started with a building in Kikubo and slowly bought pieces of land in city outskirts like Kisenyi where he erected huge buildings.
It is said it’s Segawa who encouraged his enterprising sons Ssentongo and Kiggundu to invest in real estate businesses.
Three months ago Ssentongo, who is also the landlord of Segawa Arcade, announced that he has waived 3 months’ rent at Segawa Arcade in Mengo Kisenyi.