Home » Zimbabwean lobbying group appoints diamond mogul Martin Boka consulting adviser

Zimbabwean lobbying group appoints diamond mogul Martin Boka consulting adviser

by Ishioma Emi

The Zimbabwean lobbying group, Affirmative Action Group (AAG), has appointed diamond mogul Martin Boka as consulting adviser in charge of the diamond sector.

Boka will play an advocacy role to safeguard the rights of disadvantaged persons and groups engaged in the sector.

Boka will also be tasked with mobilizing and using organized pressure to eliminate factors that limit the participation of blacks, women, the disabled and youth as asset owners and managers in all sectors of the economy, IHarare reported.

Commenting, Boka noted that “the most important thing was the opening up of spaces for the future generations, the youths, women, and carrying on the legacy that AAG founders Philip Chiyangwa and Roger Boka (ed. Martin’s father) started. A legacy that encourages their ‘participating economically, not just in Zimbabwe but on the continent and globally.’”

“It’s an opportunity actually to have managed to lure him. I said, your father started this thing with me, you are so knowledgeable about diamonds, come and work with the new team,” Chiyangwa said. 

Boka is group chairman of BCE Holdings, a conglomerate with interests in aviation, diamonds, investments, petroleum and tobacco. He also chairs Boka Investments.

Boka is the son of the late Roger Boka, a visionary Zimbabwean entrepreneur who founded Boka Group. His father was a leading African black empowerment advocate. As of 1999, Boka Group owned one of Africa’s most extensive tobacco trading floors.  

Roger Boka was known for his criticism of multinational banks, as they denied black people access to business financing and accused them of discriminating against black entrepreneurs who lacked collateral. He later founded United Merchant Bank, which offered loans to blacks at favorable terms. 

However, Boka’s bank collapsed after it allegedly sold fake bonds, purportedly to raise capital for a state-owned slaughter and meat processing firm, AP news reported. He died in 1999.

Affirmative Action Group

Formed in 1994, the AAG is an indigenous business lobbying group that originated out of the frustration felt by the young black businessmen Peter Pamire and Chiyangwa and their desire to influence swift changes to economically empower black business people.

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