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Senegal singer Youssou Ndour appointed culture minister

Youssou Ndour, a Grammy-award winning singer, is named tourism and culture minister under the cabinet of newly elected President Macky Sall.

Youssou ndour culture minister senegal 2012 04 05Enlarge
Senegalese singer Youssou N'Dour, who last year announced he would quit music to become a full-time politician in Senegal, has been appointed culture minister under the government of newly elected President Macky Sall. (Abdelhak Senna/AFP/Getty Images)

Senegalese musician Youssou Ndour has been named tourism and culture minister in the cabinet of newly elected President Macky Sall.

The Grammy-award winning singer has been an outspoken critic of former leader Abdoulaye Wade, and announced he was quitting the music industry to focus on politics.

But Ndour, 52, was disqualified from running as a candidate himself, and instead backed Sall in the presidential election. Sall, who won a run-off vote last month, was sworn into office on Monday.

Ndour is one of 25 people appointed to the new cabinet, down from about 40 under his predecessor, Reuters reported.

More from GlobalPost: Senegal: Macky Sall sworn in as president

Amadou Kane, former head of the Senegalese branch of French bank BNP, was appointed minister of the economy.

Agence France-Presse noted that slimming down the cabinet was one of Sall's campaign promises.

Ndour is a successful businessman in Senegal, where he owns a media group, a night club and a music studio, the BBC reported.

"It is a great day for Senegal, a great day for Africa ... now we can get to work! I am very happy, very moved. It is democracy which has won," Ndour said, according to AFP.

More from GlobalPost: Senegal News: Youssou N'dour announces presidential candidacy (VIDEO)

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/senegal/120405/youssou-ndour-appointed-culture-minister-senegal