akon

Senegalese-American singer Akon, whose Akon Lighting Africa initiative aims to bring electricity to some of the 600 million Africans who lack it, announced on Thursday the launch of a new “Solar Academy” for the continent.

The institution, scheduled to open this summer in Bamako, Mali’s capital, will try to give African engineers and entrepreneurs the skills needed to develop solar power. European experts will help supply training equipment and programs.

The academy will aim to teach people how to install and maintain solar-powered electricity systems as well as micro grids, “which are really taking off in rural Africa”, Akon Lighting Africa said.

Africa has 320 days of sunshine a year, the organization said in a statement, so harnessing solar energy is an ideal way to enable those without electricity to get it.

“We have the sun and innovative technologies to bring electricity to homes and communities. We now need to consolidate African expertise,” said Samba Baithily, who founded Akon Lighting Africa with Akon and Thione Niang.

Seventy percent of Africans are under 35, and creating sustainable jobs is vital, the group said, so investing in solar power for the future can help in more ways than one.

“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.”

The group announced the launch of the academy at the second United Nations Sustainable Energy for All Forum in New York

(reuters)

BY KAPA187

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8 COMMENTS

  1. That is good. Abamano they think of what they can bring home than the A Phiri Anabwera sydrome. But our technical schools and universities should also be preparing students with solar power training including research

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  2. If only African Americans could look at Africa as a place of opportunity for them!

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    • And how exactly is Africa an ‘opportunity’ for African Americans? Imwe mukangiwa, simukwanisa, what opportunities?

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  3. THIS IS A GREAT IDEA BECAUSE THE SUN IS A COMMODITY WHICH CAN NEVER BE EXHAUSTED IN AFRICA. MIND YOU, THIS IS WHAT ZESCO IN ZAMBIA HAS COMPLETELY FAILED TO DO- TO DIVERSIFY FROM HYDRO POWER WHICH TAKES HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OR BILLIONS TO DEVELOP. ZESCO WOULD HAVE DEVELOPED SOLAR ENERGY FOR LIGHTING STREETS AND DOMESTIC HOMES WHILE THE MORE POWERFUL HYDRO IS LEFT FOR POWERING MINES, MANUFACTURING AND PROCESSING INDUSTRIES. BUT ZAMBIANS CAN’T THINK BEYOND WHAT A WHITE MAN LEFT AFTER INDEPENDENCE GAIN. THIS IS AN ACADEMY WHICH WILL DEVELOP ENGINEERS TO DESIGN AND RESEARCH INTO FURTHER ENHANCEMENTS OF SOLAR ENERGY IN THE CONTEXT OF THE AFRICAN DOMAIN, AND TECHNICIANS TO MAINTAIN WHAT ENGINEERS HAVE DEVELOPED. HENCE, SOLAR SYSTEMS MANUFACTURING IN AFRICA FOR LOCAL AND EXPORT MARKETS.

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  4. Way to go, Akon. If only our leaders were as interested in uplifting the plight of the people they rule over and not only interested in enriching themselves thru dubious oil deals & secret security loans.

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  5. Where are you USELESS so called UNZA graduate engineers but no innovative ideologies. USELESS you are; wake up !!

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