The Kenyan government has formally announced the formation of an 11 member Blockchain & Artificial Intelligence taskforce which will provide the roadmap to contextualize on the application of these emerging technologies in the areas of financial inclusion, cybersecurity, land tilting, election process, single digital identity and overall public service delivery.
Cabinet Secretary for ICT Joe Mucheru has appointed Dr Bitange Ndemo to lead the 11 member task force which consists of experts from academia, research institutions and the local tech industry. The task force’s immediate goal is to make recommendations on how the government can leverage on the emerging technologies in the next five years, with other key milestones in 2027 and 2032.
The team, which reports to the Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru was unveiled at Teleposta Towers and comprises of the following individuals;
1. Bitange Ndemo
Dr. Bitange Ndemo will serve as the chairman of the taskforce. He is an ICT Champion, Academician, and a Newspaper Columnists and serves currently as an Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship at the University of Nairobi’s Business School where he teaches and researches on entrepreneurship and research methods with most of his research work being focused on ICT and small and medium enterprises. He is the immediate former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Communication where he served from 2005 to 2013.
2. Juliana Rotich
Juliana Rotich is a Technologist, MIT Media Lab Director’s Fellow, TED Senior Fellow and currently serves as Chair of World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Data Driven Development. Juliana is Co-founder of Ushahidi and BRCK Inc. A hardware company based in Kenya that makes BRCK and other devices.
3. Stephen Chege
Steve is the head of corporate & regulatory affairs at Safaricom and is responsible for the Corporate Affairs Division, which provides strategic support functions to Safaricom’s operations. These functions include the Regulatory and Public Policy, Legal and Secretarial Services.
4. Dr Charity Wayua
Dr Wayua currently serves as a Research Manager at IBM where she leads the Public Sector team whose mission is to develop commercially viable technologies that transform how governments function and provide services to their citizens.
5. Elizabeth Ondula
Elizabeth Ondula is a Research Software Engineer at IBM Research – Africa. In her role, she explores the development and optimization of blockchain applications for IoT Applications.
6. John Walubengo
John Walubengo has over 15 years experience in the IT Training and Consulting; his area of specialization is the design and deployment of secure, Internet based solutions for Local Area Networks and Wide Area Networks. He holds an MSc in Strategic Business IT (University of Portsmouth) and a BSc in Mathematics & Computing (KU) and is currently a PhD student at the University of Nairobi. He has earned several industry certifications including the CCNA and the CISA certification.
7. Fred Michuki
Mr Fred is the Managing Director of Mobile Financial Solutions Limited, a local company that specilaizes in building software solutions for financial services industry including mobile banking platforms, mobile loans platform, custom financial solutions, Premium rate service providers, financial hosting solutions.
8. John Gitau
John is a Networking and Cloud Services expert based in Kenya.
9. Mahmoud Mohammed Noor
Mr Mahmoud is an ICT expert with a focus on Networking and Community.
10. Lesley Mbogo
A Technology and E-Commerce expert based in Kenya.
11. Michael Onyango
The team will also advice whether the Government needs an Innovation Fund.