Zimbabwe has 16 official languages. English, Shona and Ndebele are the most widely spoken languages in the country. Approximately 70% of the population is Shona speaking and speaks ChiShona as their first language. Also it is said that around 20% are Ndebele and speak IsiNdebele as their first language. These statistics have not been officialised yet because Zimbabwe has never conducted a census that enumerated people according to ethnic groups.
All official languages are acceptable in education, government, etc. but English is traditionally used for official business. It serves as a common language for most Zimbabweans. From around early childhood development (ECD) commonly called grade zero, schooling is conducted almost entirely in English. It is the first language of Zimbabwe.
- Ethnologue report on languages of Zimbabwe