Kanye West Is Building A ‘New City Of The Future’ In Haiti
Kanye West has said he’s building a ‘new city of the future’ in Haiti following a meeting with the country’s president last month.
West first discussed his new development during a recent interview on The Joe Rogan Experience, where he explained he took a trip to Haiti with Shervin Pishevar, an Iranian-American venture capitalist and early investor in Uber.
The rapper and presidential candidate claimed that during the visit, President Jovenel Moïse ‘gave’ him and Pishevar ‘this island to develop, to make a city of the future’.
See a clip of his interview with Rogan below:
West attempted to explain how he and his business partner planned to make the land benefit its residents, saying:
We’re going to have the farmers and the people that live there take a percentage, take ownership of the land they have right now so that when it raises in value, they all eat off of, uh… it’s what the idea is.
After the interview went live on October 24, West took to Twitter to share some more details about his proposed city, explaining that he was ‘engaged with Haiti’s government to make a transformational investment’.
The rapper went on to say the project would ‘bring jobs, development, help support local farmers and fishermen and build a new city of the future in a very beautiful country’.
The extent of West’s relationship with the Haitian government remains unclear, but the presidential candidate has shown interested in creating new cities for a while as part of his Yeezy company’s farm-to-table initiative. West already owns and plans to develop property in Atlanta and Wyoming.
According to the Miami Herald, West’s trip to Haiti involved a visit to Île de la Tortue. There, the president spoke to the island’s population about developing an airport, and he also reportedly described West as ‘a huge friend’ who he brought to see the island.
It’s unclear whether this is the same island that Moïse apparently handed over to West, but if it is the rapper may face some legal issues as the development rights for Île de la Tortue are actually owned by a lawyer in Texas, rather than the Haitian government.
Grey Pierson, whose father negotiated a 99-year lease of the island with the Haitian government in the early ’70s, commented:
That’s just outrageous. The president is just giving away stuff?
In a statement released on October 27, cited by the Miami Herald, Haiti’s Foreign Ministry said West’s visit was part of Moïse’s efforts to invite ‘the African-American community to come and explore the option of investment across the territory in a certain number of areas with potential’.
The statement added that ‘at no time has the head of state been occupied by the false idea to sell out the national territory for any reason’.
West’s plans to build a ‘city of the future’ have been likened to the smart city Akon is building in Senegal.
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CreditsThe Joe Rogan Experience/YouTube and 2 others
The Joe Rogan Experience/YouTube