WITH Ebere Wabara; email@example.com, 08055001948
THISDAY Front Page of June 3, 2017, welcomes us today: “In this regard, the governors, under the auspices of the Nigeria (sic) Governors (sic) Forum (NGF), said they have (had) resolved to offset the backlog of salaries….”
“A statement from the NGF statement reads….” This horrendous repetition of ‘statement’ is demonstrative of poverty of vocabulary!
“…I managed to give a glass shattering (glass-shattering) performance.”
“Aniocha and Oshimili communities in Delta State are neighbours that have decided to reunite under (on) the Njiko Aniocha-Oshimili platform.”
“…which in actually (sic) fact had neither the land nor the mineral resources of its own to justify its huge financial status.’ Just delete ‘actually’ on grounds of its redundancy.
“Unemployment and lack of electricity is (are) going worse.”
“We, the Governors and the people of the South East zone welcome the PDP flag (standard) bearer….” This is one of the lexical legacies of the late Bayo Oguntunase who will be interred next month. May his soul continue to rest in peace.
“Mr. President (sic), as you begin your Presidential (sic) campaign for (in) our zone….”
“…let us joyfully embrace the only President who has shown love to Ndigbo in words and in deeds.” Get it right: in word and in deed.
“As a humatarian (humanitarian), philanthropist, God fearing and kind hearted (God-fearing and kind-hearted) brother….”
“APC raises fresh alarm, alleges rigging plot, clampdown of (on) opposition leaders”
“PDP, APC trade banters at NLC conference” ‘Banter’ is uncountable.
“Customers smile home with sports utility vehicles at (in) PZ promo in Benin” Niger Delta Chronicle: Sport-Utility Vehicles (SUVs)”
“Customs FOU Zone C arrests 18 over (for) smuggling”
“Group G4 calls for violence free (violence-free) election”
“Vote for a Kind hearted (kind-hearted) Leader (sic)” (Powered by the 7 wise preachers)
‘Announcement’ in “Obituary Announcement” is redundant because ‘obituary’ is an announcement!
“MASSOB warns state govt over harrassment” Spell-check: harassment, but embarrassment
“Our dreams must keep coming into (to) reality in Lagos…We endorse Akin Ambode—a public servant of 27 years (years’) standing” In case you did not know,
“Its (It’s) either they are talking about GMB dying soon or….”
“I pray that you do not experience death of your child/children…talkless of (let alone) being taunted and mocked!”
“This is what Goodluck Jonathan and PDP has (have) turned to campaign theme!”
“The documentary mentioned how he divorced his late wife and some other beer parlour (pub) gist.”
“Again, Muhammad Buhari has never referred or attack (attacked) Goodluck Jonathan’s family.”
“He only concentrates (concentrates only) on issue based (sic) (issues-based) campaign.”
“Let’s keep going forwards (forward).”
“Niger (Nigerien) army repels insurgents’ attacks”
NEWSMEN are told to avoid stating the obvious, shun excess luggage and Keep It Short and Simple (KISS). Therefore, both “ghastly” and “fatal” were needless in “eighteen people were killed (18 fatalities) and two others seriously injured in a “ghastly” (already frightening) accident on…” See Wordsworth, Feb. 15. Second, the reported teenage mother was “delivered of….” It is not proper to state that “a teenage mother who just delivered”. Women do not deliver but are “delivered of” babies.
I join calls on you not to be discouraged by the annoying misuse of
English by our local media. Some professionals are incorrigible and
impervious to the weekly corrections which your column offers on the appropriate use of English. You may want to know that I have newspaper cuttings (musty) of such columns, including “Caught Out” by Ladbone (Lade Bonuola) of the old Daily Times. Please, keep educating us. Also X-ray the misuse of synonyms. For instance, on Xmas decorations, “prices (prizes) are now given…” Sunday Vanguard, January 25, Page 6. On Page 19 of the same title of February 1, Flavour Nabania is reported “to walk (work) out in the gym”. A piece on “Buhari’s presidential gamble” stated on Page 56, Sunday Vanguard, January 25 that “Aper Aku and Busari Adelakun both died in prison due to poor maltreatment.” What an over-kill! “Poor” is needless. We have civil society, not societies (Nigerian Tribune, Page 1, February 5)
Homophones seem to confuse many writers. For instance, The Nation, Page 67, February 15, reported Fashola as asking the service chiefs to toe (some writers would have used “tow”) the “part (occurred two times) of honour” by resigning but the writer/editor got it right just once. Also writing on Christmas decorations, “prices (prizes) are now given….” Sunday Vanguard, January 25, Page 6. On Page 19 of the same title of February 1, Flavour Nabania is said “to walk (work) out in the gym”. A piece on “Buhari’s presidential gamble” stated on Page 56, Sunday Vanguard, January 25 that “Aper Aku and Busari Adelakun both died in prison due to poor maltreatment.” What an over-kill! “Poor” and “mal” from the Latin word “malus” mean the same thing — bad.
By the way, there is a single “civil society” but many civil society
groups and not “civil societies protest polls shift” (Nigerian
Tribune, Front Page, February 5). KOLA DANISA, 07068074257
EBERE, I have to chip in again. “…the average journalist usually burns this professional flag, forgets their human past” is informal usage while “… the average journalist usually burns this professional flag, forgets his or her past” is formal usage.
Out of a lawyers’ population estimated “at about 20,000” (at 20,000 or to be about 20,000) only five females “have been opportune” (had have the opportunity) to adorn the silk. Special note on usage: “opportune” is an adjective, e.g. an opportune moment (not a verb – it is not verbalized). Rotimi Fasogbon thanks for your observation on this, too.
The preponderance of the views aired by the people centres on/upon (not around/round) issues like corruption and unemployment.”
Before embarking on the strike (or industrial action)….
Another Note: In Christendom and current usage, “cleric” has been classified very old-fashioned. It is now restricted to Muslim Cleric/Clerics. Use Clergyman, Clergywoman, Pastor, Priest, Minister or Woman Minister, Reverend, Evangelist, etc.
“In fact” is preferred to “in actual fact”.