In 2014, African superstar and business man Akon set up the Lighting Africa initiative. The program which is aimed at powering and empowering Africa is supported by Solektra solar company in partnership with 2 other Africans. Currently, many communities, homes and establishments across Africa, summing up to over 600 million people have a taste of electricity and they have Akon to be thankful to.
For the practical development and boom in African economy it is crystal clear that adopting the use of renewable energy is the way to go. The star who concurs that foreign aids have not helped Africa in any way, founded Solektra Solar Academy on 15 December in Bamako, Mali, with his partners- Samba Baithily & Thione Niang.
The aim of the academy is to nurture young engineering minds towards the larger picture of powering Africa via solar/renewable energy. That is the trend for most African developing nations- making the best out of the sunlight which we have plenty of. The academy impacts on the students the essence of the solar initiative and equips them with the innovative tech-knowledge necessary to achieve the end goal. In his words, “Patriotism for Africa and smart business” are his drive for taking up this lighting program
The Guiness Book of World Records best-selling artist for master ringtones in the world, under his “for-profit” company, produces street lights, domestic and individual kits in 14 African countries. With the supply of these, Akon is fulfilling his pledge as many rural communities- domestic and business enterprises alike – no longer live in darkness.
“I don’t believe in aid in Africa, I don’t believe it works. Aid has been the central point for Africa for years and there has been no progress. If you want to help people you have to empower them, employ them and educate them so that they can provide for their own”- Akon
The Senegalese-American superstar, Forbes 5th Most Powerful African Celebrity (2011) and a true son of the African soil, Akon, has always been in Africa’s good books. This is because of his patriotism regardless of the distance. He never forgets home and he equally makes helpful contributions to the welfare and development of the African people. A while ago, Akon partnered with Shell and Pavegen to establish a solar-powered pitch in Lagos, Nigeria.