Kenya will harness power of AI to drive bottom-up development, says PS Tanui

PS State Department of ICT and Digital Economy, Eng. John Tanui, addresses the participants of the Connected Summit Africa 2024

The government has committed to use the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to drive the development agenda both locally and across Africa. Eng. John Tanui, the ICT Principal Secretary, said embracing digital technologies, in particular AI, would ensure equitable access to resources and development and promote inclusion.

“As Kenya, we are deeply committed to harnessing the transformative power of technology to drive the development agenda forward. And this, I believe is the aspiration of the country as a whole,” said the PS.

Eng. Tanui noted that as the Fourth Industrial Revolution gains momentum, AI has emerged as a catalyst for innovation, driving efficiencies across industries and creating new opportunities for inclusive growth.

“AI future holds immense promise for Africa, from revolutionising healthcare and education to enhancing agricultural productivity and environmental sustainability,” he said.

He explained that to fully unlock its potential, African countries must bridge the gap between social impact and policy relevance, ensuring that AI initiatives are grounded in the realities of local communities and aligned with their aspirations.

But even as countries embrace AI, Eng. Tanui observed that cybercrime remains a big risk.

“As we witness the exponential growth of digital connectivity, we must also confront the corresponding rise in cyber risks. Investing in cybersecurity is a strategic imperative, safeguarding our critical assets and preserving the trust of our citizens and partners,” he said.

Prof Edward Kisiang’ani, the PS Broadcasting, noted that technology has influenced development in Africa and across the world in many sectors, including agriculture, health and education as he asked African countries to enhance connectivity using broadband internet access and affordable devices.

Prof Edward Kisiang’ani, the PS Broadcasting, confirmed that technology has indeed influenced development in Africa

“Access to high speed internet contributes to creation of smart solutions for the citizens across the world. Connectivity has played a significant role in creative economy. Technology has provided the youth with job opportunities, digital skilling and networking across the world,” he said.

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