‘Outrightly’ Outdated



By Ebere Wabara; ewabara@yahoo.com, 08055001948

“ONLY card carrying (card-carrying) members can be nominated, can nominate, and can vote”

DAILY Sun Editorial of September 11 goofed: “Indeed, the Yoruba Elders (sic) Council (YEC) while praising him for his ‘inspiring’ performance as acting president and as vice president had to express its disappointment on (sic) Osinbajo’s current views restructuring.” The imperative of restructuring: disappointment at/with/about/by/in—depending on context—never ‘on’.

“Ahead of 2019 general election in the country, there is the need for the coalition of civil society organisations to provide voter education that will bring about free, fair, credible and violent free (violent-free) election.”  

“SON alerts on (to) cancer-causing substance in school uniforms from China” (THE BUSINESS REPORT, September 10)

“Libya (Libyan) coach apologises to Nigeria for ‘juju’ comment”

“Rohr invites Ezenwa, four homes based players for Liberia friendly” Get it right: four home-based players

“Police recovers stolen cars” No community application: Police recover (plural verb) stolen cars

“Why were they not liquidated outrightly by NDIC and on whose instruction?” (Vanguard NEWS ANALYSIS, August 9) There is no such word as ‘outrightly’. The correct entry is ‘outright’, which could function either as an adjective or adverb. Perhaps, in the future, it would be acceptable.

“…give it the oxygen that will restore confidence in (to) our democratic system is indeed sad.” (DAILY Sun Editorial, September 12)                                         

“Etuhu turns down last minute call-up” (Vanguard SPORTS, August 9) Nigeria versus Ghana: last-minute call-up.

Still on phrasal verbs: “NNPC-Capital Oil Kero-Direct Scheme kicks-off in 3 states” (THISDAY Business WORLD, August 9) Let us energize: scheme kicks off. For noun application only: kick-off.

“Volatility of global stocks: Nigeria may not be immuned” (THE GUARDIAN BUSINESS Banner, August 7) Even Rutam House is not immune from solecisms.

SUNDAY Tribune of August 5 promoted a faulty headline: “AMCON injects N678bn to three rescued banks” Nigeria’s most informative newspaper: AMCON injects N678b into (take note) 3 nationalized banks.   

DAILY INDEPENDENT of August 6 issued a few fractured lines: “Ibrahim explained that the Bridge Banks are being run by the NDIC as growing concern….” National News: going concerns.

“Meanwhile (a comma) the CBN appointed (a hyphen, please) managements cease to be employers (employees) of CBN but are now under the NDIC.”

“The NDIC boss further said that the corporation will (would) keep operating….”

“…a cutter in cutting key and breaking burglary proof….”  A special entry: burglar proof/alarm.

“Travails of under-aged sex workers in the hands of their Madam.” Get it right: under-age commercial sex workers.”

“US-based firm poises to crash prices of ‘Tokunbo’ cars” (DAILY INDEPENDENT Headline, August 5) Auto Business: poised. And this for formal communication which is the basis of newspaper language: second-hand or used cars instead of ‘Tokunbo’!  Native English could be used in vernacular/local/soft-sell (celebrity)/informal publications, not standard dailies.

“Second Niger Bridge: Group tasks FG on expedite actions” (DAILY CHAMPION Banner, August 5) ‘Expedite’ is a verb—not an adjective. So: Group tasks FG to expedite actions. Alternatively: Group tasks FG on expeditious actions.

THE NATION NATURAL HEALTH Column of August 4 was not clinical on two occasions: “It has been noted that cases of mental illness is on the increase in Nigeria….” Music as healing therapy: cases of mental illness are on the increase.

“Our psychiatry hospitals are filled with young men and women suffering from mental disorder.” Clinic Day: Our psychiatric hospitals.

“I, Otunba (Dr.) Christopher…on behalf of my family, felicitates with my leader….” (Full Page Congratulatory Advert, Vanguard, August 4) The challenge of honorary doctorate degrees: I felicitate (not felicitates) with my leader!

“Customs dismiss 4 for gross misconduct” (Nigerian Tribune Headline, 3 August) The Nigeria Customs Service (either NCS or Customs for headline purposes) takes singular—not plural—verbs. This is too basic to be bungled daily by journalists.

“Robbery: Policeman killed by vigilante group” This way: vigilance group.

“The gallantry effort exhibited by the driver of.…” Get it right: either gallantry or gallant effort.

“Armed robbers attacked a Lagos bound (a hyphen) luxurious (luxury) bus at the same spot killing some passengers and made (making) away with several millions of naira belong (belonging) to the travellers who were mostly traders.”  What a coarse arrangement! We surely need a syntactic consultant surgeon!

“The mess has simply re-occurred because of the propensity of some of our citizens to flout relevant laws and statutes with impunity.”  Return to the basics: recurred (never re-occurred).

“Haruna had at (on) various occasions stunned the nation by the level of fraudulent practices the former functionaries had being (been) involved.”

“Nigeria’s soccer house set to take the bull by the horn and change the face of the game.”  Sport Today: take the bull by the horns.

“The wretched has (have) no voice”

”The victim is a specie (species) from among the wretched of the earth.”

“We could do nothing against such formidable odds giving (given) the worthless tools at our disposal.”

“…from whom he took over the reign of power.”  This way: reins of government.

“Within few months of his administration, the crime rate in the state ostensibly reduced to the barest minimum….” For goodness’ sake, what is the function of ‘ostensibly’ here?

“The congestion on our roads are (is) very unhealthy for the economic sector.” A recurring S-VD case as below, too

“A further review of the performance of the major currencies of Nigeria’s trading partners also indicate (indicates) that the Euro….”

‘An association comprising of Great Britain and its former colonies….” Just remove ‘of’ to foreclose neocolonialism!

“The strappy look is now the vogue.” ‘Vogue’ and ‘is’ connote currency.  So, yank off ‘now.’

“The pen will always eventually silence the gun in a contest between the two (between them) because the former is creative and produces lasting artifacts while the latter is destructive.” For me, the bracketed preference hallmarks scholarship.