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Embracing AI for a Progressive Malaysia: Anwar Ibrahim's Call to Master the Basics

Published: 1.19.2024

In a bid to demystify the fears surrounding artificial intelligence (AI) and bridge the digital divide, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, alongside Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli, inaugurated the "AI for Rakyat" program at Universiti Putra Malaysia on Tuesday. The program, a collaboration between the Economy Ministry and Intel, aims to empower Malaysians with fundamental AI skills through a concise four-hour module.

Anwar Ibrahim emphasized the importance of embracing new technology without succumbing to unfounded fears. He reassured the public that AI, if aligned with human values, would not dehumanize users. Addressing concerns about the potential takeover by synthetic entities, Anwar highlighted the role of educators, urging them to impart values while teaching AI skills.

“This will begin with the Prime Minister himself” decla red Anwar, emphasizing the need for leadership in mastering AI basics. The government envisions that at least one million Malaysians will acquire these skills within three years, tackling the digital divide and ensuring inclusivity for all.

Anwar underscored the significance of embedding values in the education system and promoting a cultural firewall against the loss of humanity. He asserted that the responsibility lies within homes and educational institutions to cultivate and preserve these values.

The "AI for Rakyat" initiative is not merely about technology adoption but a strategic move towards digital transformation. Anwar urged swift action, stressing the urgency of embracing AI now to avoid falling behind globally. He called upon ministries, agencies, and educational institutions to ensure prompt completion of the four-hour module by students and employees.

The Prime Minister set an example by committing himself to the program, urging all civil servants and ministers to follow suit. Anwar emphasized the need for accountability, expecting relevant agencies to report progress within a month.

As Malaysia positions itself for a digital future, Anwar Ibrahim's proactive stance advocates not only the mastery of AI skills but also the preservation of human values. The "AI for Rakyat" program emerges as a cornerstone in Malaysia's journey towards technological advancement, emphasizing that with the right values, the nation can reach for the sky without losing its grounding in humanity.

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