Pan-African Parliament Officers Participate in Global Effort to Establish Ethical AI Practices in Governance

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Mr. Otieno Jacob Odada and Mr. Jeffery Onganga of the Pan-African Parliament join directors and strategic communications experts from the Parliamentary Data Science hub within the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)’s Centre for Innovation in Parliaments at the Câmara dos Deputados in Brazil

Last week marked a pivotal moment in the journey towards ethical AI implementation in parliamentary settings as officers from the Pan-African Parliament, Mr. Otieno Jacob Odada and Mr. Jeffery Onganga, convened with a cohort of Information Technology directors and strategic communications experts. This gathering took place within the halls of the Câmara dos Deputados in Brazil, hosted by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)’s Centre for Innovation in Parliaments.

The primary objective of this collaborative effort was to co-develop a comprehensive guide to best practices for the integration of AI technologies within parliamentary systems. Recognizing the escalating risks associated with AI utilization devoid of ethical considerations, the initiative sought to establish a robust framework safeguarding human agency, transparency, privacy, accountability, fairness, and security.

Scheduled for launch at the upcoming World e-Parliament Conference in November 2024, these guidelines encapsulate a culmination of practices and processes meticulously curated to steer AI development and usage towards ethical horizons. Emphasizing the imperative of ethical principles, the framework aims to mitigate potential pitfalls inherent in both limited AI applications and generative AI systems.

In a poignant social media reflection, Mr. Onganga underscored the critical importance of a well-crafted communication strategy accompanying the deployment of AI tools within public institutions. “During our 3-day working meeting in the Brazilian capital, I had the opportunity to reiterate the importance of a communication strategy to accompany the deployment of AI tools in our public institutions. This is to ensure that fears, biases, and misconceptions are addressed, facilitating adoption by different business units and stakeholders”, said the Media and Communications officer of the African Parliament.

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