Business grinds to a halt as Mutare bids a Hero Farewell to Diamond Kingpin Bothwell "Sir Bathez" Hlahla

R.I.P Bothie, one of the young and famous diamond dealers from Mutare. 

Bothwell became one of the success stories in the diamond business in Mutare, a rags to riches story. Bothie, known as Sir Barthez, amassed diamond wealth through brokering diamonds from Chiadzwa in  Marange, where there is a $3 billion dollar diamond deposits.

Bothwell Hlahla, the untouchable diamond dealer who rose from being a mere streetkid to a millionaire and died in a car crash last Friday was given a five-star farewell by his business connects.

Hlahla died shortly after being admitted to Murambi Gardens Hospital.
He suffered from severe fractured bones and internal bleeding, which he sustained when his top-of-the-range CLX convertible Mercedes Benz was involved in a fatal accident.

Manicaland police confirmed the death. Hlahla’s farewell is believed to have surpassed that of top music promoter and businessman James “Jimmy Jimalo” Chiyangwa.
Business was brought to a halt, with most of the central streets in Mutare bought to a traffic jam. Police had to man the roads to allow the 10 kilometre convoy of mourners to pass.
More than 200 vehicles flooded both carriageways of Mutare’s main street.
Links with Zanu (PF)
After striking a fortune in the Chiadzwa diamond fields, Hlahla - within a short period of three years - rose from being a car washer on the street pavements to a top businessman.
He had close links with many top Zanu (PF) politicians, who he allegedly linked to buyers. These strong ties were believed to be one of the main reasons why he was never arrested or ordered to surrender his belongings during the crackdown on illegal diamond dealers.
Zanu (PF) governor Chris Mushohwe, central committee members Esau Mupfumi and Enock Porusingazi including the minister of Mines and Lands Obert Mpofu allegedly benefitted from Hlahla’s links.
Hlahla openly bankrolled several Zanu (PF) youth projects in Mutare as a way of buying immunity in and out of the “highly protected” mining fields without hassles.
He left behind a fleet of luxury vehicles, several splashy properties in Mutare and Harare, a fleet of taxis, several shops. He was also believed to have fat offshore bank accounts.
He hosted the Jamaican duo Brick and Lace and is said to have spent hundred thousands of dollars to bring them to the eastern border city of Mutare.
His funeral attracted diamond buyers and sellers from across borders who later allegedly secretly met to map the way forward on the fate of future diamond transactions.
Hlahla was well connected with many illegal diamond dealers in Zimbabwe and abroad. Some from as far as Mozambique, Nigeria, South Africa Australia, China, UK, United Arab Emirates, and beyond.

The Zimbabwean.

RIP Mutare Son and Hustler.

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