NAIROBI - YouTube star Piko Taro was appointed by the Ugandan government Friday as a tourism ambassador to help boost the number of Japanese travelers to the East African country.
In a ceremony in the capital Kampala, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni asked Piko Taro, best known for his hit viral song "Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen," if he is a samurai. The Japanese responded that he is "a singer-songwriter" and drew laughter from the attendees with a performance of the song, also known as "PPAP."
Uganda "has fantastic weather and tasty food. It is a great country to visit for those who want to spend a relaxing time," the singer said of the country known as the "Pearl of Africa" for its lush greenery, but which currently draws few Japanese tourists.
Piko Taro, who will serve in the post over the next year, said he aims to write a song to promote tourism to Uganda.
According to the singer, he met with members of the Ugandan national soccer team on Thursday and taught them how to do the PPAP dance so they can perform it when scoring a goal.
The singer is popular in Uganda, with PPAP topping the local charts in October last year, said an official from Piko Taro's management office Avex.