Wikipedia defines artificial intelligence (AI) as intelligence demonstrated by machines, as opposed to the intelligence of humans and animals. Example tasks in which this is done include speech recognition, computer vision, translation between (natural) languages, as well as other mappings of inputs.

AI applications include advanced web search engines e.g. Google, recommendation systems used by Youtube, Amazon, and Netflix, such as Siri and Alexa, self-driving cars (e.g. Waymo) generative or creative tools such as ChatGPT and I-Art, automated and competing at the highest level in strategic game systems such as chess.

Artificial intelligence was founded as an academic discipline in 1956, and in the years since it has experienced several waves of optimism. In the first decades of the 21st century, highly mathematical and statistical machine learning dominated the field, and this technique has proved highly successful, helping to solve many challenging problems throughout industry and academia.

The various sub-fields of AI research are centered on particular goals and the use of particular tools. The traditional goals of AI research include reasoning, knowledge representation, planning, learning, natural language processing, perception, and the ability to move and manipulate objects. General intelligence (the ability to solve an arbitrary problem) is among the field's long-term goals [Wikipedia]. The use of this technology has not come at a better time as the world is slowly evolving into a global village. These AI tools are used on a daily basis or rather should be used on a daily basis in a normal setting by an average citizen most likely because they increase productivity and simplify certain activities and tasks.

The years preceding the Covid-19 era showed that Africa has a large number of young generations as compared to other continents. The median age of Africa is pegged at 19,5 as compared to the likes of China at 37.7 or Germany at 47.1 this demographic of young Africans is set to double in the so near future and with it the demands to meet the expectations of a growing population in the continent will require innovative approaches to address the expectations of an expectant young generation.

The implementation and use of AI have not been a walk in the park for most of the African continent's inhabitants. Although it can be safely said that each country has its own challenges, the undeniable fact on the ground is Africa is taking baby steps to adapt to the global village and it will take a lot of sacrifices to catch up with the rest of Europe or Asia due to a number of perennial challenges among them poverty, political instability, transnational organized crime and revolutionalism.AI is the god send of the solution to all the problems bedeviling the African continent at large but it will be a while before the sun rise and many has to enjoy its sweet fruit.

Dark cities

Three-quarters of Africa constituting about 700 million Africans have no access to energy. Africa has +-40 % access to electricity the lowest in the world. Access to energy is at the forefront of the biggest driver and enhancer of effective implementation, launch, and use of AI and reaping a plethora of benefits. Although Africa’s energy potential is enormous only a fraction of it is being used. Although some African countries have done so well in achieving the electrification of their urban and rural populace, the use of AI remains largely a dream. Among the top most electrified countries in Africa is Morocco 100% for both rural and urban populations. South Africa has 84.4% access to electricity for both rural and urban populations. Without electricity to power up the telecommunications infrastructure, AI is obsolete, it is imaginary.

Internet connectivity

According to the Wikipedia, the internet in Africa is limited by a lower penetration rate when compared to the rest of the world at 24.4% as of 2018 with only 4% of the African population having a fixed-broadband subscription. The majority of internet users use it through mobile broadband. During the Covid-19 pandemic many people who were not connected to the internet lost access to health care, information and education let alone production in industries that was seriously affected. Without access to internet connectivity AI performance and benefits only remains a pipe dream.

The interconnectivity of a global village will be a myth that will exist only on paper. Internet access has been the ultimate source of technological leapfrogging in Africa. Africa's internet penetration at 43% of the population is still low compared to a global average of nearly 64.2% according to Statista. There is also a large difference in internet access between rural and urban areas with smartphone usage in urban areas exceed that of rural areas. The high cost of data is another impending issue that sits on top of the provision of internet connectivity where it is provided.

Outdated curricula

Investing in digital education is still a challenge for most countries in Africa. People need to be aware of the existing technologies available to them and how to use them. This should be engaged from an early age in the school curriculum through education policies like STEM.

Saharan African countries have about one or fewer engineers per 10000 inhabitants according to the world bank industrialized countries have over 20-50 for the same number. The skills gap in Africa is huge in applied science, engineering, and technology. Graduates lack the skills and competencies required in modern enterprise partly because university or school curricula is outdated. The skills gap between Africa and the rest of the world needs to be minimized for the village to synchronize.

The fourth industrial revolution is upon us around the world and Africa the world’s poorest continent cannot cut itself off from the technological transformation. [Industry 4.0].

Skills gap

Lack of funding and technical expertise, a shortage of hardware, and expensive data charges low levels of technological awareness, an inadequate ecosystem of digital providers and power cuts. Lack of digital skills and literacy and investment in technology sits among the many factors impending internet connectivity which is a key enabler of AI.


For so long most African countries have been engaged in unending wars on ethnical, tribal, or racial motivation. This geopolitical instability and decade-long wars make investment in this area of AI even harder. Bureaucracy and government red tape are another common barrier often encountered in most African countries.


According to Wikipedia ethics refers to a set of principles based on public acceptance, religious beliefs and cultural norms on the best behavior that can be observed and followed during the development and deployment of innovative and emerging technologies.

Ethics form the basis of Africanism in the continent of africa.AI poses major difficulties for businesses and governments, notably in terms of ethics notably are areas to do with accountability, data bias, transparency, and socio-economic risks. Sitting high on the list of ethical deficiencies is data scarcity in Africa according to Microsoft 2018 that the majority of acquired data does not correctly reflect the African experience implying that many algorithms may not be appropriately adapted to the features of local populations.

AI technology has the potential to alter business operations and performance, enhance productivity, and improve health care, education, and transportation in the region. Africa needs to establish robust governance structures and infrastructure to improve not only the design and development of AI but adoption and use of AI technologies.AI should be structured to address African-specific needs and problems.