Akon Will Begin Construction On New $6 Billion City In Africa In 2021, Compares It To A ‘Real Life Wakanda’
Akon (born Aliuane Thiam) has announced that construction will begin next year in the grassy fields in Mbodiene for his new city in Senegal, calling it a “Real Life Wakanda.”
The project will cost him around $6 billion to make it come to fruition, although the future of tourism has uncertainties globally.
Akon rolled out his idea to create a “utopian city” back in 2018, with hopes that the city will provide much-needed jobs for Senegalese and also feel like a “home back home” for Black Americans currently facing racial injustices. Akon says:
“The system back home treats them unfairly in so many different ways that you can never imagine. And they only go through it because they feel that there is no other way,”
“So if you’re coming from America or Europe or elsewhere in the diaspora and you feel that you want to visit Africa, we want Senegal to be your first stop.”
Akon, was born in the United States, to Senegalese parents, but he spent a lot of his childhood in Senegal, a county on the West part of Africa.
Authorities in Senegal are reportedly excited to have Akon break land and have embraced him as a native.
With International flights resuming in Senegal for citizens and residents, tourism Minister Alioune Sarr, says Akon’s move will make more people believers of Africa.
“COVID-19 has sown doubt everywhere. This means that those who had doubts about the attractiveness of Senegal, and Africa in general must convince themselves that there are men and women who believe in Africa.”
Akon adds that he has already secured $2 billion of the $6 billion needed, and construction will begin in early 2021, with the first phase of the project taking more than three years to build.
Akon reportedly has plans to feature a hotel, seaside resort, a tech hub, recording studio, hospital, police station, and his own cryptocurrency already called AKoin.
He has called the new city to a “real life Wakanda”, noting that buildings will be made of glass and metal instead of wood. The fictional Wakanda city was introduced in Marvel’s blockbuster hit Black Panther.
Akon recently made headlines when he said that the people of Senegal have moved past the thought of slavery. He says,
“Well, in Senegal we’ve kind of overcome the thought of slavery. We don’t even think about it.”
“I think it’s also the art of just letting the past go and moving towards the future. I think in the U.S. they have this stigma of just not letting go of the past and blaming the past on every mishap, or you know, disappointment. I think as long as you hold on to that past, it’s just a lot of weight that you carry with you everywhere you go and it’s hard to move forward and move fast when you got a weight on your back. You just gotta let it go.”