‘Armed Banditry’ Wrong “




Confirming the incident, a senior security personnel (official) at the university’s security department….” (SOUTH EAST NEWS, May 15) ‘Personnel’ is a collective noun.

“Ekene reiterated to Daily Sun, yesterday, that his focus is (was) to get scholarship and go abroad to study Chemical Engineering at the….”

“Ekene…said if he does (did) not get admission or any scholarship, he would prepare for the 2020 UTME.”

“…that the resources sent to the state for the presidential election was (were) not accounted for by the chairman aided by the deputy chairman.”

From INTERNATIONAL NEWS of May 15 comes the next headline blunder: “Court halts Guatemala ex-dictator’s daughter presidential bid” A rewrite: Court halts Guatemala’s ex-dictator’s daughter’s presidential bid

DAILY Sun Editorial of May 22 takes over with two juvenile misapprehensions: “…underscored the major achievements of the nation’s anti-graft agency at (on) the occassion (occasion).”

Politics & Power of May 22 misprinted: “Why kidnapping, armed banditry is on rise” A rewrite: Why kidnapping, banditry are on the rise” There cannot be banditry without arms/implements/sharp objects/dangerous weapons—if any of these items, among copious others, is not circumstantial, then it is not banditry, but just robbery (not armed robbery).

“Royal fury in Imo oil producing (oil-producing) communities” (Oriental News Headline, May 22)  Abuja Metro of May 22 offered readers this headline mistake: “We feed, shelter, cloth (clothe), give them sex free, victims lament”

“Sudan (Sudanese) army, protesters dispute on…”

“Malawi go (goes) to polls to elect president, parliament” Alternatively: Malawians go to polls…

“…who stormed the telco’s (telecom’s or Telco’s) corporate headquarters at about (about) 4pm (4 p.m.).” (THISDAY Front Page, May 25)  

“THISDAY gathered that the EFCC team demanded for documents in connection with the share listing which were promptly provided to them.” Alleged share manipulation: delete ‘for’ from the extract.

“A stockbroker, who spoke on the matter last night said the astronomical rise in the MTN shares few (a few) days after the listing….” (Source: as above)

“I pray God will keep you in good health and gave (give) you a long life”

Wrong: unparalled

Right: unparalleled

“The immediate area for results remains agriculture which has limitless potentials (potential or potentialities) for growth and expansion.” (DAILY Sun Editorial, May 29)

“Yoruba hunters vow to stop Fulani herdsmen (herdsmen’s) attack”

“Instructively, while two of the three political parties at the onset (outset) of the current democratic journey….”  

“…especially as it relates to micro, small and medium-scale enterprises , should be prioritized.” (DAILY Sun Back Page, May 29) Rebooting Nigeria’s economy: either micro and macro or small and medium—no mix-up!

 “Nigeria has the second largest crude oil reserves in Africa with 37.2 billion barrels out of the total 126,847 billion barrels in the continent.”   For ‘the most widely read newspaper’: on (not in) the continent.

“Senate demand cash withdrawal limit report from CBN” Senate demands, but senators demand…  “This may not be unconnected with the moral-cum-political pedestal on which the old man stood for sometime (some time).”

“It is a pity that Nigeria has had a history of self-governance, brought about by the regular incursion of military to (into) power.”

”From the onset (outset), let me declare that I pulled out of Economics immediately I scaled the hurdle at the advanced level.”

“Now you are on (in) the saddle.”

“From all intent and purpose….” No extinction of the English language: to all intents and purposes.

“The singular word that has eaten very deep into the fabrics (fabric) of the Nigerian nation….”

“It has gradually destroyed the foundation of most people’s lives, removed their trust and believe (belief) in hard work, diligence, honesty, and excellence.”  ‘Hard work’ and ‘diligence’ cannot co-function.

“In a country where innocent children lack assess (access) to one good meal a day….”

“…but what is the sense in embarking in (on) such wasteful projects when salaries have not been paid, and majority (a majority) of Nigerians are hungry and angry.”

“What is more distressing is that while the government is urging the poor masses…”  The dictionaries inform me that ‘the masses’ are the poor members of the society. Therefore, no poverty of expression (‘poor masses’)

“Yet they are expected to put in their very best.” ‘Best’ is a superlative point, which requires no intensification or amplification (very).

“Thus, even regular payment of workers’ salaries alone cannot be a panacea of (to) the present societal scourge known as corruption.”

“Permanent secretaries poise (poised) to fight corruption”

“Introducing a new body will usher in competition between the two bodies.” Why not competition between the bodies?

“Apology or bribery to ensure that ‘handouts’ from the state house is (are) not stopped….”

“…the dignity of a matured (mature) politician….”

“For those who may have forgotten, the legislators tore at each other’s (one another’s) throat and flung chairs at themselves (one another), forcing the governor to beat a hasty retreat….” “Experts assure on prices of Nigerian debt instruments” Who did the experts assure?

“The wild, drunken and licentious sessions that precede many of these attacks in (on) the island are often ignored….”

“Since assuming the reign of power after the unexpected death of….” Restoring Nigeria’s lost glory: assume/drop the reins of government.  Got the point?

“Like (As) I said earlier at the beginning of the programme….”

“And it is such an appetite that predisposes the officers into (to) scheming for political power.”

“You will not fail to shade (shed) tears when the story of the death of the ex-banker….”

“Apart from the mayhem rival cult members unleash on themselves (on one another)….”

“The objective then was to put pressure on the colonialists, shake off colonial mentality, assert the identity of true independence and to instill university culture into (in) members.”

“But while the governor was savouring the euphoria of his new office and putting (getting) his acts (act) together for the tasks ahead….”

“There was a unique feature of that day which I would not easily have overlooked even if others do (did).”

“The same man that was singing Hosanna in the synagogue yesterday had suddenly became (become) a cheer leader among the Ogboni confraternity”

“Will the Igbos (the Igbo) be convinced that even with an exclusion of one of their own in the country’s top political leadership….”

“Indeed, the most endangered specie (species) since movement in the area returned….”

“These inscriptions are to make (mark) them out from destruction during clashes between (among) these three ethnic groups of Ijaw, Itsekiri and Urhobo.”

“And that was manifested in the magnitude of white elephant projects and unexpected contracts that littered the whole place during that era of graft and institutionalized corruption.” A syntactic surgery: white elephants (which imply projects) and unexpected contracts.

“…to get to the safe point, all the groups concerned must sheath (sheathe) their swords and give peace a chance”

“Why did INEC obey those injunctions and rulings, knowing fully (full) well that it had the legal powers to ignore them?”

“The 1999 constitution simply reverted back to the provisions as contained in the 1979 constitution.” Delete ‘back’ in the interest of all stakeholders!


SOMEONE observed last week that I left out the identities of some newspapers. It was deliberate. I mention only a few publications at the beginning to show the time frame of the entire extracts. Mentioning all of them will take a lot of limited space. This also explains the superficial treatment of the errors. If I had a full page, this column would become as comprehensive as possible. Over to the Editor!