Tanzanian billionaire Mohammed Dewji, who was kidnapped over a week ago, has been found, his family said Saturday.
Mr Dewji, 43, was abducted by unidentified gunmen last Thursday October 11, when he went for a workout at the high-end Colosseum Hotel in Oyster Bay, Dar es Salaam.
His family spokesperson Azzim Dewji confirmed to a Tanzanian media outlet that the businessman is safely at home.
“Mo is 100 per cent fit but traumatized by the whole experience,” Azzim said.
“We thank the President for ordering security organs to make sure he is found. We are happy he is now home and safe.”
According to Azzim, Mo will address the media later today.
A message from his company METL Group on Saturday morning also said the 43-year-old is safe and sound.
“I thank Allah that I have returned home safely. I thank all my fellow Tanzanians, and everyone around the world for their prayers. I thank the authorities of Tanzania, including the Police Force for working for my safe return.” — Mohammed Dewji (3:15AM, Dar es Salaam),” the message reads.
However, the twitter message from METL Group didn’t provide any details about how he was freed or got away from his captors.
Some reports indicate that he was found dumped at the Gymkhana grounds in Dar es Salaam.
Tanzania’s Environment Minister January Mkamba said he had spoken to Dewji but noted he had bruises on his hands and feet which could have been as a result of being tied up by his kidnappers.
“Nimemuona na kuongea kwa kirefu na Mohammed Dewji. Ni mzima wa afya isipokuwa ana alama za kufungwa kamba mikononi na miguuni. Mnamo saa nane usiku, watekaji waliamua kumtupa kwenye maeneo ya viwanja vya Gymkana. Naamini Polisi watatoa taarifa za ziada kuhusu kilichojiri,” he said.
Dewji’s family had offered a reward of 1 billion Tanzania shillings for information leading to his release.
Who is Mohammed Dewji?
Dewji with an estimated net worth of $1.5 billion, is the CEO of MeTL Group, a family empire started by his father in the 1970s. He is credited with turning it from a wholesale and retail enterprise into a multi-billion dollar pan-African conglomerate now involved in a diverse range of businesses among which are agro processing, farming, telecom, manufacturing and transport business.