CIMG Advocates for Regulation and Ethical Guidelines in AI Development in Ghana

In a significant gathering held at the Coconut Grove Hotel in Accra, the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Ghana (CIMG) celebrated World Consumer Rights Day with a focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI) ethics and consumer rights. The event, themed “Fair and Responsible AI for Consumers,” delved into the crucial topic of AI’s pervasive role in modern life and the urgent need for safeguards to protect consumer rights.

Dr. Kasser Tee, the National President of CIMG, opened the event by acknowledging the historical context of March 15 as a day dedicated to advocating for consumer rights worldwide. This year, the emphasis was on the ethical deployment of AI technologies, given their significant impact on consumer experiences, from e-commerce to automated customer services.

Dr. Tee emphasized the importance of ethical AI use and consumer protection, noting the lack of a comprehensive regulatory framework. He encouraged public dialogue to advance the understanding and application of AI, aiming to harness its benefits while ensuring consumer rights are protected.

Insights into AI’s development process were provided by Mr. Emmanuel Gbeve, Chief Technology Officer at AIDEC Digital. He explained Machine Learning and Deep Learning’s roles in creating systems that replicate complex human thought processes. Mr. Gbeve underscored the potential dangers of AI without appropriate consumer protection measures.

Prof. Fred Mcbagonluri, President of Academic City College, then discussed the need for thoughtful regulation of AI. He pointed out that AI’s impact on various fields, including medicine and education, requires setting wise boundaries. Prof. Mcbagonluri advocated for homegrown solutions and cautioned against overregulation that could hinder Ghana’s technological progress.

Representing the Cyber Security Authority, Mrs. Mary Ama Bawa highlighted efforts to educate Ghanaians about AI and cyber threats. She noted the absence of an AI policy in Ghana, contrasting it with recent developments in the EU. Mrs. Bawa stressed the importance of cautious yet urgent progress toward understanding and regulating AI.

Mr. Maxwell Ababio, Deputy Director of Tech and Ethics at the Data Protection Commission, shared that his agency has been collaborating with the UN Global Pulse and the Ministry of Communications and Digitalisation to develop Ethical Guidelines for AI in Ghana. Highlighting the completion of a draft awaiting approval, Mr. Ababio announced an upcoming national sensitisation programme to foster awareness and understanding of these guidelines.

The event included discourse from a diverse panel of experts from the Data Protection Commission, Cyber Security Authority, and the fields of technology and marketing. Together, they underscored the importance of a multi-stakeholder approach to ethically harness AI’s power while protecting consumers.

In conclusion, CIMG demonstrated its commitment to advocating for consumer rights in the era of AI, emphasizing the need for all organizations to recognize and uphold these rights zealously. The discussions at the event highlighted the complex challenges and opportunities presented by AI, paving the way for a future where technology serves humanity ethically and responsibly.

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