Akon announced on his social media channels on Monday that he is building a city of the future in Africa.
“Just finalized the agreement for AKON CITY in Senegal. Looking forward to hosting you there in the future,” the musical artist of Senegalese descent tweeted.
For money, residents will use a cryptocurrency known as AKoin.
The city, a five-minute drive outside of Dakar, will be billed as a global eco-tourism destination.
Senegal’s tourism ministry said the singer wanted to build a sustainable ecotourism village that would “campaign for the environment.”
Akon City shall run entirely on renewable energy through the artist’s solar-power project, Akon Lighting Africa.
“Beyond his status as an artist, it is Akon, the investor who believes in Africa,” the tourism ministry said in a statement before the ceremony.
He spoke to Newsweek in 2018 about the project.
“With the AKoin we are building cities, the first one being in Senegal,” the singer, whose real name is Aliaune Thiam, explained. “We’re securing the land and closing out all the legislation papers for the city. We want to make it a free zone and cryptocurrency-driven as a test market.
“If it works, we will scale it out to all the other countries in Africa so all the cities are connected. It’s going to be a 50-to-100-year project, most likely. I probably won’t even live to see it finished. But for the project in Senegal, we have a 10-year deadline for that city to be built out.
“We’re currently raising all the money for it now; some of it will be through hedge funds outside of Africa and the majority of it will be through NGOs and investors within Africa itself.”
“A lot of people don’t really know, but I’m literally advising 30 African presidents as we speak,” Akon said, receiving a wealth of applause from the audience.
“It’s all based on the youth, the development of the youth and things of that nature. I’m everywhere in the world dealing with politics, so my foreign experience is through the roof.”