The Senegalese singer and producer Akon has formed a charitable organisation that aims to give millions of African households access to solar power.
The rapper, who founded Akon Lighting Africa last year, has now announced the creation of a "solar academy" to develop expertise in solar energy. It will provide entrepreneurs, engineers and technicians with training in the technical and economic aspects of solar power.
The academy is to begin its first courses this summer in Bamako, Mali.
The project is being introduced with sponsorship from Solektra International, an energy utility based in New York; European technicians will help to supply training equipment and programmes. Â
Thione Niang, a founder of Akon Lighting Africa, said: "We expect the Africans who graduate from this centre to devise innovative technical solutions. With this academy, we can capitalise on Akon Lighting Africa and go further."
So far residents in 14 countries have received solar devices from Akon’s foundation including multiple street lamps, and domestic and individual solar kits.
Image via Akon Lighting Africa