Police have tightened borders in and around Tanzania’s economic capital, Dar es Salaam, while investigating the abduction of a man considered to be Africa’s youngest billionaire.
Mohammed Dewji, 43, was seized Thursday morning by two masked gunmen as he entered a hotel for a workout, according to Dar es Salaam police chief Lazaro Mambosasa.
The Colosseum Hotel and Fitness Club is in Oyster Bay, an upscale Dar es Salaam neighborhood.
Mambosasa said the gunmen fired shots in the air before pushing Dewji into a car and driving away. He said police were searching for two white men considered the main suspects.
“All our borders in and out of the Dar es Salaam region are being monitored to make sure the cars involved are stopped or confiscated and the culprits are brought to justice as soon as possible,” Regional Commissioner Paul Makonda said at a news conference.
A video posted on Twitter showed Makonda at an earlier news conference saying that Dewji had been found and his captors arrested. But Makonda later discounted that claim.
Officials have not disclosed whether there is a claim of responsibility for the kidnapping or a ransom demand.
Dewji heads the MeTL Group, which operates in about 10 countries with interests in agriculture, insurance, transport, logistics and the food industry.
In 2016, U.S.-based Forbes magazine estimated his wealth at $1.5 billion.
Sunday Shomari contributed to this report.