Forbes Africa Magazine recently featured the multi-talented Idris Elba, shedding light on his ambitious new ventures, which include investing in the continent’s movie industry, his work around building Sherbro Island City in Sierra Leone, and as a humanitarian tackling the climate crisis and lending a helping hand to farmers in Africa.
Sherbro Island City is an innovative project that aims to transform an underdeveloped island into a thriving urban centre, and Elba’s visionary initiative has become the focus of attention. Situated off the coast of Sierra Leone in West Africa, Sherbro Island has faced economic challenges and neglect.
However, through the Sherbro Alliance Partners (SAP), Elba intends to change the island’s fate dramatically. The Public-Private Partnership (PPP) project seeks to leverage the island’s natural resources and beauty while prioritizing social and environmental sustainability.
This endeavour extends beyond mere infrastructure construction; it entails establishing a new Special Economic Zone (SEZ) as a large-scale, phased development. This zone will serve as a robust engine of economic growth for Sierra Leone and offer a unique model for private sector-led development.
Elba emphasized Africa’s potential and the need to find a connective dialogue to strengthen investments and opportunities on the continent. His latest project, the construction of an intelligent city, embodies this commitment to progress.
“Africa has money. It’s not Africa that’s poor: It’s the people that are poor: Africa has opportunities, and we have to find the connective dialogue, the connective tissue strengthens that investment. I’m not an economist; I don’t know the specific answers on how we turn that leaf. But I do know that it does start with dialogue.” – Idris Elba, Forbes Africa.
Sherbro Island City, Elba’s latest project on the continent goes beyond dialogue to investment. Along with partner Siaka Stevens, he plans to build a smart city in Sierra Leone.
Elba has also announced plans to build film studios in Ghana and Tanzania, with the hope that the projects will attract more filmmakers in the two countries.