AFC wins Innovation award at the Connected Summit 2022
14th April, 2022. The Corporation received the Best in Government Services through ICT award during this year's 11th ICT Connected Summit Innovation Award held at Leisure Lodge Beach & Golf Resort Diani, Kwale County. The award recognized the Corporation's continued commitment to innovation and customer-centricity with a highlight on its Automated Loan Grading & Scoring innovation which has led to improved business processes and business growth. The Connected ICT Innovation Awards celebrate Kenyan entrepreneurs that have launched new ICT products and services. The awards are designed to highlight innovations that meet Kenya's blueprint vision to build a vibrant middle-income economy by the year 2030. Participants are asked to submit proof of their innovation in one of 10 categories derived from the Vision 2030 economic pillar. The categories were; Affordable housing, Universal Healthcare, Manufacturing, Food security, Fintech, Emerging markets, Education, Green technology, Government services through ICT and County Government utilizing ICT. Initiated in 2009, the summit is jointly organized by the Ministry of ICT and the ICT Authority in collaboration with the private sector and other industry players. It aims to establish a platform for collaboration, capacity building and knowledge sharing between government and the ICT sector with a view to linking and hastening the implementation of government IT projects to world-class standards. “Indeed by its very nature technology is ever changing and disruptive and it is the very reason why as a sector and experts there is need to have deep discussions on how to accelerate digital transformation in Kenya,” he said. The PS said this year's 'Connected Summit' comes at a time when Kenya is fast transforming into a regional ICT hub courtesy of huge investment in the sector, propelling the country into a 'globally competitive digital economy. “By going continental we will be able to showcase Africa's capabilities, build better cooperation among industry players, open new markets and spur socio-economic development,” he said. Ochieng said some of the Summit's key outcomes are in active use such as Huduma Centers that have transformed public service delivery across Kenya, hence essential government services can now be accessed from the comfort of home on the E-Citizen portal. On his part, ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru said the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the utilization of technology globally and most nations recognize the strategic importance of ICT as an enabler of economic development. ''The Government of Kenya has not been left behind in developing plans meant to accelerate the digital transformation of the country,'' he said. The highlight of the event was the launch of a ten-year ICT Master Plan (2022-2032) by ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs Cabinet Secretary (CS) Joe Mucheru. The Master Plan is anchored on four pillars of digital infrastructure, digital services and data management, digital skills and innovations and enterprise and digital business was unveiled The master plan seeks to provide the roadmap for the structured delivery of ICT in Kenya and create a digital society and economy that is able to exploit the national, regional and global opportunities presented by the dynamic sector. Giving his remarks during the launch, CS said the master plan is a product of an all-inclusive, participatory and consultative process, noting that its successful implementation will require concerted effort and commitment from all stakeholders. “This master plan will define our efforts in the next ten years to create business opportunities, wealth creation, employment opportunities and the contribution of ICT to the general growth of the economy,” said Mucheru. The newly unveiled master plan highlights the reduction of the digital divide to spur economic growth of rural areas, proposes the deployment of 100,000 kms of fibre optic infrastructure to 40,000 public schools and other learning institutions, 20, 000 government institutions, 13,000 health facilities, 25,000 hotspots to support youth and innovators and establishment of 1,450 wards digital innovation hubs. “The master plan is crucial at a time when the world enters a new round of industrial revolution and countries around the globe are expediting their digital economic expansion hence the need to modernize government services,” he said. “The master plan proposes establishment of two software factories and another two electronic manufacturing factories that will serve Kenya and the region and are estimated to hire over 10,000 software engineers among others,” he said. Over 1,000 innovators, entrepreneurs, investors and corporates from all around Kenya and beyond gathered to get inspired, learn and share ideas at the connected summit. “To position the country as a regional ICT hub, the plan proposes establishment of regional ICT smart hubs as well as regional submarine cables maintenance depots,” he noted. The CS said to enable the citizens and the public servants to effectively utilize technology in their businesses and work, the master plan proposes digital literacy capacity building for all citizens starting with 20 million citizens, training of 300,000 public servants and building adequate technical support through training of 10,000 ICT professionals. “To position the country as a regional ICT hub, the plan proposes establishment of regional ICT smart hubs as well as regional submarine cables maintenance depots,” he noted. Over 1,000 innovators, entrepreneurs, investors and corporates from all around Kenya and beyond gathered to get inspired, learn and share ideas at the connected summit. Uganda's ICT Minister Dr. Chris Baryomunsi, his Tanzanian counterpart Dr.Faustine Ndugulle and Rwanda's Director General for Digital Transformation Gordon Kalema, Esther Koimett (Broadcasting and Telecommunications), and ICT Authority Ag. Director General Dr. Kipronoh Ronoh as well as the Government Spokesperson Col. (Rtd.) Cyrus Oguna were among the dignitaries who attended the summit. AFC was represented by the Managing Director, Mr. George Kubai, Chief Credit Officer, Mr. Bonano Badia, Chief ICT Officer, Mr. Daniel Olilo, Head of Credit, Christopher Kibiru, Head of Finance, Mr. Cornelius Onsongo, Head of Human Capital & Training, Mr. Godrick Itur, Senior ICT Officer,James Mwangi, ICT Officer, Mr. Savio Sunkuli, ICT Officer, Claire Abuga, Partnerships and Resource Mobilization Officer, Sara Mburia and Ag. Senior Credit Officer, Jackson Kariuki.