Gun­men seize ‘rich­est man’ in Tan­za­nia

Waikato Times - - World -

A ty­coon said to be Tan­za­nia’s wealth­i­est res­i­dent has been kid­napped from a spa ho­tel by masked gun­men.

Mo­hammed Dewji was ab­ducted yes­ter­day shortly af­ter ar­riv­ing at the gym at the Colos­seum Ho­tel Oys­ter Bay in Dar es Salaam.

Po­lice said that three for­eign­ers had been de­tained in con­nec­tion with the kid­nap­ping of Dewji, known to fel­low coun­try­men as ‘‘Mo’’.

How­ever, con­flict­ing re­ports have sur­faced sur­round­ing the dis­ap­pear­ance of the 43-year-old – and a mo­tive for his ab­duc­tion re­mains un­clear.

Paul Makonda, the re­gional gover­nor and a close ally of Pres­i­dent John Magu­fuli, told re­porters that Dewji, pic­tured, was kid­napped ‘‘by whites trav­el­ling in two ve­hi­cles’’.

Wit­nesses out­side the ho­tel, how­ever, only spoke of one ve­hi­cle and none men­tioned the eth­nic­ity of the as­sailants.

‘‘We were ap­proach­ing the area when, sud­denly, in front of us, four peo­ple wear­ing masks alighted from a small ve­hi­cle and shot once in the air,’’ an Uber driver said.

‘‘They en­tered the ho­tel and came out with a per­son whom I iden­ti­fied as Mo,’’ he added.

Adding to the con­fu­sion, the city’s po­lice chief, Lazaro Mam­bosasa, was widely re­ported as say­ing that Dewji had been res­cued, only to re­tract the claim, say­ing he was mis­quoted.

How­ever, he later said po­lice had 12 sus­pects in cus­tody, in­clud­ing the ho­tel’s se­cu­rity man­ager.

Fi­nan­cial mag­a­zine Forbes puts Deji’s wealth at US$1.5 bil­lion (NZ$2.3b), and in a 2017 re­port, it said Dewji was Africa’s youngest bil­lion­aire. – Telegraph Group

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