By Andile Ndlovu
It’s been a while since Akon released new music, but as the Senegalese-American singer prepares to put out an ambitious five-part concept album, he’s making contentious comments by asking why unhappy African-Americans don’t “just go back home”.
In an interview with al- Jazeera slated to air on Saturday, the five-time Grammy nominee talked to journalist Folly Bah Thibault about various matters, including the recent racial tension in the US and protests around the country.
While he acknowledged the “frustration” of the protesters, he also said African-Americans needed to “broaden their horizons”.
The system in America, according to the star, was never built for black people.
“I always felt like Africa was for Africans. So when I see African-Americans in America dealing with all these issues, my first question is, why don’t they just go back home, back to Africa?”
Failing that, they should suck it up and move on.
He added: “How many African-Americans do you know who actually consider Africa as a vacation spot?
“Even if it’s just for knowledge, just to know where they came from, just to get an idea of what that is.
“There is so much fear instilled in them that they wouldn’t even want to go there to visit. You mention Africa, they start shaking.”