Tanzania highlights its ambitious plans for AI

Dar es Salaam. The government has prepared a guideline aimed at managing and protecting the public against the use of emerging technologies including Artificial intelligence (AI).

Education, Science and Technology minister, Prof Adolf Mkenda made the statement on Friday, February 9, 2024 in Parliament when responding to a question raised by Kawe Constituency Member of Parliament, Josephat Gwajima.

Mr Gwajima sought to know government plans regarding technological preparations aimed at producing artificially intelligent robots as well as protecting the country’s ethics.

In his response, Prof Mkenda said the government has initiated the National IT Policy of 2004 that recognises the rapid advancements in science and technology, including AI, and the need to update the policy accordingly.

“The government is investing in infrastructure, equipment, and expertise development at various levels to cope with the pace of technological advancements,” he said.

Furthermore, he said preparations have begun for the construction of two smart IT colleges in Nala and Buhigwe located in Dodoma and Kigoma regions respectively.

According to him, procedures were underway to establish a centre of excellence in research and innovation, specifically focused on AI and other emerging technologies, at the Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology (DIT).

“The government also plans to incorporate IT education into the primary education curriculum to ensure students are equipped with relevant knowledge from a tender age,” he said.

He said despite advancements, the government emphasises the importance of managing the development of science and technology in a way that would preserve Tanzanian values.