Despite being best known for making pop music, Akon’s decided to give filling dancefloors a break in favour of bringing solar energy to people living in rural Africa.
The singer has decided to seriously diversify and set up charity Akon Lighting Africa in 2014.
The singer, who is of Senegalese-American descent, has recently opened a Solar Academy as part of his effort to bring electricity to 600 million people in rural communities across Africa.
Located in Bamako, Mali, the academy’s aim is to help engineers produce solar power.
The organisation states that the continent averages 320 days of sunshine a year.
Samba Baithily, who co-founded Akon Lighting Africa with Akon and Thione Niang, told Reuters: “We have the sun and innovative technologies to bring electricity to homes and communities. We now need to consolidate African expertise.”
“We expect the Africans who graduate from this center to devise new, innovative, technical solutions,” said Niang.
“With this Academy, we can capitalize on Akon Lighting Africa and go further.”
So think about that next time ‘Locked Up’ comes on.