Tanzanian, Mohamed Dewji, named youngest billionaire in Africa (file photo).
By Samuel Kamndaya
Dar es Salaam — The chief executive officer (CEO) for Mohammed Enterprises Limited (MeTL), Mr Mohammed Dewji, and four other young Tanzanians are among the people who will play a major role in Africa’s economic development in the near future, according to a Paris-based think tank.
The Choiseul Institute has ranked Mr Dewji – who is fondly referred to as Mo – on position one in its ‘sneak preview of its 2016 Top 100 of the Choiseul 100 Africa – Economic Leaders for Tomorrow.
Other young Tanzanian leaders and their accorded ranks in brackets include: Ms Elsie Kanza (46), Mr Luca Neghesti (55), Mr Edha Nahdi (72) and Mr Moremi Marwa (79).
The 40-year-old Kanza is the head of the African Desk at the World Economic Forum while Mr Negesti (38) is the chief executive officer for Jefag Logistics Tanzania.
Nahdi (38) is general manager for Amson Group while Mr Moremi Marwa (39) is chief executive officer for the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) Plc.
The five were picked after a rigorous assessment, conducted for several months, and involving experts and specialists on the continent, according to a statement that has been posted on the Institut Choiseul website.
“For several years, Institut Choiseul has been a pioneer in the anticipation of great change, emerging opportunities and talents across the continent. Mohammed’s recognition in this regard sends a great message of hope to Tanzania and Africa that we are increasingly involved in championing the growth of the continent and as its citizens, we too can play an active role in building the future we want,” reads a statement on the Institut’s website.
Mr Dewji told The Citizen in Dar es Salaam yesterday that his being ranked highly on the report is a result of the commitment that he holds for Africa in general and Tanzania in particular.
“I am very optimistic about Africa’s growth. The continent is home to 20 of the world’s fastest growing economies and this gives me immense hope that the continent’s future is bright,” he said.
Mr Dewji, who is an alumnus of the Georgetown University in the United States of America, reiterated that so far, MeTL is one the largest in the country and is expanding to several countries on the continent, noting that that is why he has been repeatedly ranked on the list. On the other hand, Mr Marwa said the rank was clear testimony that Think Tanks were recognising the effors and hardwork that the DSE team were putting together in the endeavour to grow the stock market as a viable tool for financing Tanzania’s economic development.
MeTL, which began its operations in 1970s, currently employs about 28,000 people indirectly through its operations scattered across trading, agriculture, manufacturing, energy and petroleum, financial services, mobile telephony, infrastructure and real estate, transport, logistics and distribution sectors.
The goal, according to Mr Dewji, is grow the company into a fair and formidable $5 billion operator by 2018 and employing more than 100,000 people.
There was no immediate reaction from the other four Tanzanians who have been recognised.