Tanzanian President John Magufuli says the West should remove sanctions against Zimbabwe. He made the call at the 39th Southern African Development Community (SADC) summit in Dar es Salaam as he assumed the chairmanship of the body.

The two day affair was themed “A Conducive Environment for Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development, Increased Intra-Regional Trade and Job Creation.”

Magufuli says member states should stand together to ensure sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe are removed.

He says the country is ready for a new future, and that United States and European Union sanctions are no longer necessary due to recent political and economic reforms.

“These sanctions have not only affected the people of Zimbabwe and their government but our entire region.”

SADC Executive Secretary Stergomena Tax says: “The private sector is the engine of development as it creates jobs, undertakes economic production, contributes to government revenue and helps to lift the living standards of our people.”

Meanwhile, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa says he is happy with the deliberations.

Turning to his work in Lesotho where he was appointed to facilitate the reform in that country, the President says there is progress.

The summit has also agreed to adopt Kiswahili as the fourth official language of the bloc.

Currently, the official languages of the 16-nation body are English, French and Portuguese.

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