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NITDA boss tasks lawyers on adoption of AI

Felix Oloyede

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NITDA boss tasks lawyers on adoption of AI

The Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr Kashifu Inuwa has encouraged legal practitioners, particularly upcoming lawyers to adopt Artificial Intelligence (AI) in their practices in order to offer seamless and difficulty-free services to clients.

Inuwa gave the advice at the Young Wigs Conference with the theme: “Techonomy: What Law School Doesn’t Teach You” organised by The Legal Concierge, in Kano, Kano State, North-west, Nigeria.

He noted that Artificial Intelligence is not here to steal people’s jobs, but rather as an opportunity to tap in and make work easier.

Speaking on the importance of digital services, Inuwa said, there is a need to build a system with legal mind and perception because Artificial Intelligence is taking over everything.

“We need to look at how this digital system displaces our own jobs and professions. As lawyers, most of your work is to analyse documents, give advice and do other things, which AI can do better than you. Now, are you going to compete with the AI, or are you going to augment what you do? he asked.

The NITDA boss added that this challenge can be seen as an opportunity that could be used as a source of inspiration, to think about how Artificial Intelligence can be used to help clients, and make work better.

He said: “Today in our generation, the big question is, to what extent our lives should be governed by a powerful digital system and on what terms? We have social media that try to control what we see and what we do. We also live in an increasing technology era wherever it is very difficult to separate your online life from offline; what happens online is almost the same as what happens offline.

“This increasingly quantifies society whereby all that you do is captured, stored and processed by this giant tech. They know everything about you; they can picture you more than you can picture yourself because they are aware of every minute of your life, and who you spend with.

“And this gave them three folds effect on us; firstly, they put a constraint on whatever we do, they have their own internet regulation – this is what you can say, and this is what you cannot say.

“Secondly, they control freedom of movement with autonomous vehicles, the vehicles are programmed, and they won’t stop until they reached their destination.

“Lastly, they control our perception, whatever we are doing, we rush to Google, and Google gives personalised information. The answer they will give you can be different from what they will another person,” he said.

He further explained that that as learned professionals, young lawyers debate should focus more on how to govern this system, “build a system with a legal mind and perception, because AI is taking over everything.”

“You can also AI for legal services because based on World Bank report, even in the US, more than 80 per cent Americans do not have legal services.

“The focus should be on how can we make legal services available to everyone? How can we build a system with a legal mind? How can we use AI in legal services to be more human-centric”? the DG implored.

The Young Wigs Conference is an annual event aimed at orientating young lawyers, students of the Nigerian Law School, 4th and 5th-year students of law faculties in Nigeria, and other interested persons on what to expect after school and in the course of their legal practice. (VON)

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