Africa’s youngest billionaire Mohammed Dewji was on Thursday abducted by armed gunmen from a hotel in Dar es Salaam.
Mr Dewji, who is a fitness enthusiast, was kidnapped by four masked men outside a swanky hotel gym in an affluent neighbourhood of Tanzania’s commercial capital, where he was going for his routine morning workout.
According to reports, the 44-year-old mogul was walking into the Colosseum Hotel and Fitness Club in Oyster Bay, Dar es Salaam for his routine gym session during the early hours of Thursday morning when two white men and an unknown number of accomplices in two cars waylaid him and quickly drove away.
He also said three people have been arrested in connection with the incident.
Authorities are yet to establish the motive for the kidnapping and where they are keeping the businessman.
Environment Minister January Makamba, a friend of Mr Dewji, tweeted that he had spoken to Mr Dewji’s father and the family confirmed that he had been kidnapped.
Mr Dewji, locally known as Mo, is credited with turning his family business from a wholesale and retail enterprise into a multi-billion dollar pan-African conglomerate.
According to Forbes, Dewji has an estimated net worth of US$1.54 billion (Sh1.54 trillion), and is the 17th richest person in Africa. He is Africa’s youngest billionaire.
Dewji was the first Tanzanian to be featured on the cover of Forbes Magazine in 2013 and has been featured on three separate occasions.
He is the president and owner of MeTL Group, a Tanzanian conglomerate founded by his father in the 1970s.
He is also a shareholder in the famous Simba Club in Dar es Salaam.