Vickie Remoe Institute of Digital Communications

Idris Elba ‘reframing’ Africa with Sierra Leone smart city

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Idris Elba, the lead behind the construction of a smart city in Sierra Leone, says he took on the project to change the stereotypical perception of Africa.

Elba is building the eco-city on rural Sherbro Island along with Siaka Stevens, grandson of Sierra Leone’s former president, they’ve joined forces with Octopus Energy Generation, focusing on renewable energy sources like wind and solar power to provide electricity to the island’s residents. 

“Are we ever gonna make a profit? I don’t think so, but it is about being self-reliant, it’s about bringing an economy that feeds itself, that has growth potential,” said Elba on BBC Newsday programme.

“I’m very keen to sort of reframe the way Africa is viewed. We often view the framing of Africa as an aid model and this opportunity is completely different,” he added.

He further told Newsday that the city is intended to attract business and innovation, while also appealing to holidaymakers and empowering local communities.

Elba intends to build a film studio in the eco-city as well as a retirement home for his Ghanaian mother.

Credit: BBC Africa

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