Mystery surrounds the whereabouts of China’s richest man after he criticised the regime.
Jack Ma has vanished from his own TV talent show and there has been no sign of him since late October.
The 56-year-old is said to have made around £35billion from creating Alibaba, the Asian version of Amazon, and was a poster boy for the communist regime.
But China’s rulers seemed to turn against him after he criticised regulators and state-owned banks at a financial technology conference in October.
The former English teacher was suddenly replaced as a judge on the final of Africa’s Business Heroes, a Dragons’ Den-style TV contest for budding entrepreneurs.
His photograph was then removed from the judging panel’s webpage and he was later left out of a promotional video.
The father of three had earlier tweeted that he “couldn’t wait” to meet all the contestants.
Last month the authorities suddenly announced an anti-monopoly investigation into his company.
Ma is one of China’s wealthiest men and is also well known for his work with the UN and multiple global charities.
However, in recent weeks there has been no activity on his Twitter account – which usually carried several tweets a day.
There is no suggestion so far that he has come to physical harm, reports MailOnline.
The final took place just weeks after Ma made a speech slamming China’s regulators and its state-owned banks.
But China has a no-nonsense approach to dealing with those that speak out against the regime.
In March, a property tycoon disappeared after he called President Xi Jinping a ‘clown’ for his handling of the coronavirus crisis.
Friends of Ren Zhiqiang say he was later sentenced to 18 years in prison after he apparently “voluntarily confessed” to various crimes of corruption.