The Akon Lighting Africa Initiative has been launched in Mozambique, making it the 16th country in Africa benefiting from his renewable energy project.
On Tuesday, Akon reportedly entered into a $50 million partnership agreement with a Mozambican Non-profit organization, Machel Fidus Association. Together they intend to bring electricity to Mozambique’s rural communities.
Present at the occasion was Graca Machel, Mozambican politician, humanitarian. and Nelson Mandela’s widow.
The purpose of the Akon Lighting Africa initiative is basically to improve the living standard of the people and in the longer run, foster an economic transformation in the continent.
A sufficient supply of power in any society makes it a potential economic hub as viable business opportunities are created.
In February 2014, Akon founded the Solektra company and in partnership with 2 other Africans- Samba Baithily & Thione Niang – the Akon Lighting Initiative was born.
The initiative so far has been launched in 15 African countries.
Earlier in March, this year, Akon stormed Gambia to launch the light initiative and other youth empowerment programs. He still has a target of covering 42 African countries by the year 2020.
The recent launch which took place in Maputo, Mozambique’s capital has increased the list by one. The $50 million deal with Machel Fidus Association has made the Southern country the first in the region to partner with the Akon Lighting Africa Initiative.
Machel Fidus is a non-profit organisation led by 4 young entrepreneurs- Malenga Machel, Ìris de Brito, Víctor Zandamela and Mariano Paiva.
These pace-setters are passionate about the development and implementation of sustainable projects that will improve the living conditions, economic and social inclusion of the most vulnerable in Mozambique.
Away from the solar business, Akon was recently involved in a partnership with Senegalese music streamer, Musik Bi. The agreement gave him 50% ownership of the company. Akon intends to take African music to a whole new level by making Musik Bi a global brand. He calls it a potential African iTunes.
Akon’s objective with the energy initiative is to bridge the power challenge of Africa with a specific focus on the rural communities. He is confident that the approach will give a milestone push to the sustainable development plan of the continent.
According to the Senegalese-American star, the initiative aims to develop an innovative solar-powered solution that will provide African villages with access to a clean and affordable source of electricity.
Akon, who was Forbes 5th Most Powerful African Celebrity in 2011 has raised about $1 billion from the project. The businessman reported that there has been a spate of production and installation of street lights, domestic and individual kits in over 14 African countries.
Not only is he making power more accessible to homes and businesses, Akon has indirectly provided thousands of jobs for African youth, courtesy of the lighting project.
The impact of his project has been felt by many Africans in the rural communities of (Countries). Thus, in recognition of the noble effort to give back and develop his home continent, Akon was nominated for the Outstanding Contribution Award(Power) during the 2017 African Utility Week.
Since 2014, the Akon Lighting Africa Initiative has successively made a significant contribution to Africa’s renewable energy sector.