Botswana may adopt Kiswahili as national language, as President Masisi visits Tanzania today

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President Mokgweetsi Masisi

By Twanta Douglas –

There are expectations that Botswana may formally adopt Kiswahili as its national language, and discussions between President Mokgweetsi Masisi and his Tanzanian counterpart, Samiu Suluhu Hassan this week pave the way.

Masisi, who arrives Dar es Salaam today for a two-day official visit is expected to discuss with Hassan, the Kiswahili language in Botswana among other, according to Tanzania Foreign Affairs minister Liberata Mulamula.

Addressing the press in Dar es Salaam on Wednesday, Ms Mulamula said the two African leaders would also discuss issues of cooperation between the two countries on diplomatic relations, trade and the economy as well as how to further strengthen the Southern African Development Community (Sadc).

 Kiswahili is the national language in Tanzania and an official language of the East African Community which comprises Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, and South Sudan.

Sadc countries, whose main languages are English, French and Portuguese, have been introducing Kiswahili in schools and include South Africa and Namibia.

Tanzanian government spokesperson Gerson Msigwa also confirmed that the two heads of State will hold bilateral talks as they seek to bolster ties as member states of the (Sadc).

Mr Masisi will be the second head of State on an official visit to Tanzania since President Samia became president on March 19, 2021.

The first was Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni who made a one-day visit to witness the signing of contracts between the government of Tanzania and investors of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) on May 20. The pipeline will transport crude from the western Ugandan oil fields in Hoima to Chongoleani peninsular in Tanga Port, Tanzania.

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