Nigeria Mulls AI Strategy, To Engage Researchers

Written by on August 28, 2023

Nigeria needs to develop a national strategy to harness the power of AI for sustainable development, the Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Dr Bosun Tijani, has said.


A document titled, ‘Co-creating a National Artificial Intelligence Strategy for Nigeria,’ which he shared on his X handle on Monday, disclosed that Al has become a multi-purpose technology transforming production and service delivery, with the potential to significantly impact economic growth and social progress.


Quoting the International Finance Corporation, the ministry revealed that the strategic adoption of Al could add up to $234 billion to Africa’s GDP by 2030. It however noted that along with the opportunities, Al governance also poses some complex socio-technical challenges.


It said, “As algorithms are deployed in high-stake domains like healthcare, finance, and security, concerns are emerging around ethics, bias, transparency, job automation, and privacy. Both policymakers and researchers are of a consensus that a human-centered approach is essential to ensure Al systems are fair and accountable to all, across gender, ethnic and socioeconomic groups.”


The ministry further revealed that a national Al Strategy for the country to responsibly steer the Al revolution toward achieving national goals around job creation, social inclusion, and sustainable development has become imperative.


It added, “With collaborative leadership, Nigeria seeks to pioneer ethical and inclusive Al innovation that improves welfare and expands opportunities for all its citizens.”


The ministry stated that it intends to build on the existing work done by the National Information Technology Development Agency to develop a national Al strategy and is expanding its co-creation approach to engage and include top Al researchers of Nigerian descent globally, in the process of crafting the national Al strategy.

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