The use of data to create services addressing challenges of financial inclusion is the way to reach the financially underserved with financial solutions. Yesterday 8th February, the DataHaack4FI (DataHack for Financial Inclusion) season 2 of the competition was launched to bring out innovations that will reach people without proper access to financial services.
DataHack4FI, a hackathon organised by Insight 2 Impact is aimed at delivering appropriate financial service provisions for low income individuals.
Speaking during the launch, Insight 2 Impact Application Lab Head Nkosi Ncube noted that there is a lot of data available that developers can use to develop solutions to use in the financial sector.
Mr. Ncube observed that financial inclusion is about the people, adding that developers should think of offering solutions across borders.
“We need to think across borders and look at Africa as one market. Organisations like Liquid are promoting that mentality, that we are all connected. We have to think beyond Zambia. Financial inclusion is about developing solutions that everyone in Zambia, everyone in Africa can use,” Mr. Ncube said.
Meanwhile, Zambia Information and Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA) Director General Patrick Mutimushi observed that the rapid growth of financial inclusion has raised security concerns which call for all players to address the concerns.
“The rapid growth of financial inclusion has raised concerns of security as a result there is an urgent need to share information on the network configuration between ICT regulators and financial sector in order to build and reinforce consumer confidence.
“Digital financial inclusion agenda calls for strengthening collaboration between the financial sector and the ICT sector. This is very critical in addressing security overlaps,” Mr. Mutimushi Said.
The ZICTA Director General also noted that the launch of DataHack4FI Season 2 was aimed at, “delivery of appropriate service and low income sectors of society and enables them to meet their needs”.
And Financial Sector Deepening Zambia (FSDZ) country coordinator said the organization is committed to supporting initiatives using data to design services promoting financial inclusion. Speaking on her behalf, Charity Chikumbi said financial inclusion is about providing solutions to the financial gap that that many low income households face.
“Financial inclusion is about people. It is about understanding how to use their money and how to make it work, whether you are a farmer or a student trying to receive money from a family member or a more sophisticated professional online transaction,” Ms. Chikumbi said.
She notes that in strides to bridge the financial inclusion gap, women and youth have been left behind.
Ms. Chikumbi said data can be used to identify problems leading to the gap in financial inclusion adding that developers participating in the competition should use the data and develop solutions that will benefit the underserved.
This year’s season 2 of DataHack4FI in Zambia has been organised in collaboration with Insight 2 Impact and BongoHive in Partnership with CEC Liquid Telecom and Financial Sector Deepening Zambia (FSDZ).