Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam, also known mononymously as Akon, is a Senegalese-American singer, rapper, songwriter, record producer, entrepreneur, philanthropist and actor from New Jersey.
The US-Senegalese music mogul has said he is pressing ahead with lofty plans to create a futuristic Pan-African smart city in Senegal built in the mould of Wakanda – the fictional, technologically advanced African nation depicted in the Marvel blockbuster Black Panther.
The 800-hectare (2,000 acre), surrealist, solar-powered “Akon City”, backed by the Senegalese government and funded by unnamed investors, was first announced by Akon in 2018.
The plans depict gleaming skyscrapers, shopping malls, music studios and eco-friendly tourist resorts. They envisage that “Akoin”, a cryptocurrency founded by the R&B star, would be the central currency.
Akon City is not the first major development announced by the singer for Africa.
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