Aliaume “Akon” Thiam is taking his personal project of building Africa’s infrastructure with the creation of a futuristic city in Senegal whose economy he says will be powered by AKoin, his soon-to-be-launched cryptocurrency.
According to the New York Post, the U.S.-born artist and producer, who is of Senegalese descent, revealed the details of “Akon Crypto City” while speaking on a panel at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.
“I think that blockchain and crypto could be the savior for Africa in many ways because it brings the power back to the people and brings the security back into the currency system and also allows the people to utilize it in ways where they can advance themselves and not allow government to do those things that are keeping them down,” Akon said at the Cannes Festival, according to The Post.
The futuristic city will be built on 2,000 acres of land that was gifted to him by Macky Sall, the president of Senegal, and is within 5 minutes of the newly built international airport and also a short drive from the capital city of Dakar, according to its official website. Deeming it the “real-life Wakanda” the site says the cryptocurrency will be a part of AKoin Ecosystem—a global project that “offers an abundance of digital and in-real-life platforms and experiences that create opportunity and inclusion for youth entrepreneurs by allowing consumers to buy, hold, and spend cryptocurrency right from their smartphone through a suite of blockchain-powered apps.”
In 2014, Akon teamed up with Thione Niang and Samba Bathily on an ambitious project to provide electricity to African countries through solar energy. Four years later, the group claims to have operations in 14 countries including Guinea, Senegal, Mali, Niger, Benin and Sierra Leone.
When asked technical questions by the panel, he said “I come with the concepts and let the geeks figure it out” per the Post.