Musician and entrepreneur Aliaume Damala Badara Akon Thiam, widely known as Akon, has shared his plan of building a futuristic city in Senegal that will use a cryptocurrency called Akoin – named after himself.
He made the revelation at the Cannes Lions Festival on Monday where he described the city he plans on building as a “a real-life Wakanda” in reference to the Afro-futuristic city in Marvel’s movie Black Panther.
The Akoin website said the president of Senegal had “gifted” Akon 2,000 acres of land for the planned city near the Senegalese capital of Dakar which he named Akon Crypto City.
Akon says it is the first 100% crypto-based city with AKoin at the centre of transactional life where consumers will be able to buy, hold and spend cryptocurrency straight from their smartphones, the BBC reports.
He stated also that he doesn’t know the technical aspects of the project: “I come with the concepts and let the geeks figure it out.”
For now, Akon owns a diamond mine in South Africa and a charity for underprivileged children called Konfidence Foundation.
In 2014, he returned to the continent with the Akon Lighting Africa project aimed at providing electricity by solar energy in Africa.
Together with Samba Bathily and Thione Niang, they provided electricity in 14 African countries including Guinea, Senegal, Mali, Niger, Benin and Sierra Leone. The project also employs over 5,000 young Africans who install and maintain the solar equipment.
Born in the United States, 44-year-old Akon grew up in his home country Senegal until he was 7 years old when his family moved back to New Jersey. He spent some time in prison which influenced his music career.
His first single “Locked Up” was a worldwide hit after it was released from his debut album Trouble in 2004. He later founded two successful record labels Konvict Muzik and Kon Live Distribution.