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Access Holdings Calls for Responsible Use of AI at Smart Banking Summit

Access Holdings PLC, a leading financial services
group, has echoed the need for ethical considerations in using Artificial Intelligence
(AI), calling stakeholders in the financial industry to factor its sustainability implications.

This call to action was driven by a compelling keynote address delivered by Lanre
Bamisebi, Executive Director of IT & Digitalisation at Access Holdings, at the Smart
Banking Summit 2024 held in Kenya on Wednesday.

Speaking on the topic, “AI Guardians: Securing Compliance and Mitigating Risks,” Bamisebi’s keynote shed light on the imperative to strike a balance between innovation and responsibility as the banking sector and broader society embrace AI’s transformative potential.

“Artificial Intelligence has the power to revolutionise our societies.

Over the years, this has become increasingly evident, offering unprecedented opportunities for growth, efficiency, and innovation. From enhancing customer service to optimising risk
management, AI’s potential benefits in finance are vast.

However, as we embrace AI, we must also ensure that its deployment is ethical, secure, and compliant with regulatory standards to mitigate risks effectively,” he said.

As the transformative power of AI continues to fuel innovation, concerns remain about its negative impact on the environment.

According to OpenAI researchers, since 2012,
the amount of computing power required to train cutting-edge AI models has doubled
every 3.4 months. They also posit that by 2040, the emissions from the Information and
Communications Technology (ICT) industry will reach 14 per cent of the global
emissions, with the bulk of those emissions coming from ICT infrastructure, particularly
data centres and communication networks.

Speaking to these concerns, Bamisebi said, “The exponential growth of AI adoption
must be met with thoughtful consideration for its environmental footprint.

As we harness the power of AI, we must prioritise sustainable practices to mitigate its energy
consumption and carbon emissions, ensuring a harmonious coexistence between
technological advancement and environmental preservation.

“We must embrace our roles as guardians, and place comprehensive regulatory
frameworks, ethical standards, and continuous learning at the fore of our considerations so that we create a future that is safe, inclusive, and prosperous for all,” Bamisebi charged.

Themed ‘Navigating the Next: Africa’s Leap into Smart, Secure, and Inclusive Banking’,
the summit was a pivotal gathering of leaders spearheading the digital evolution in the
African banking and finance space.

Other contributors at the summit include Winnie Kaaka, Head of Product and Digital
Banking, Access Bank Plc; Harry Hare, Co-Founder and Chairman, dx5; Moses Okundi, CIO/CTO, Absa; Tim Theuri, CISO, Safaricom/M-Pesa Africa; Daniel
Adaramola, CISO, SunTrust Bank Nigeria Ltd; Steve Njenga, Founder and CEO, Metis
Technology Solutions Ltd, and more.

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