Media Gaffes With Ebere Wabara
“BAUCHI Gov to Akeredolu: …Mohammed yesterday said citizens do (did) not need the permission of his Ondo State counterpart, Rotimi Akeredolu, to live in the forests in the South-west state.” This is an elementary example of a reported speech error.
“Don’t despair, UNICEF tells IDPs at (on) World Children’s Day”
“Kyari: Gas supply to power generating (power-generating) companies has improved”
“2023: 5000 APC, PRP members decamp (defect) to PDP in Katsina”
Wrong: last minute substitute; right: last-minute substitute,
“…his excitement knew no bound (bounds)….” (GLOBAL SOCCER, January 21)
“For close to five years, he raced through the banking sector like a bull in a china hall.” Get it right: a bull in a china shop.
“Singapore jails senior civil servants over (for) corruption”
“ANA postponements (sic) (postpones) February reading”
“Peugeot plans to inject $7.26b on (into) research, development”
Finally from the Back Page of THE GUARDIAN under review: “One has witnessed at different occasions dissenting opinions of doctors as regards prescriptions for patient’s (a patient’s) ailment.” The Guardian youth speak: on different occasions.
Next is DAILY TRUST of February 20 with slips right from its front page lead story: “Alhaji Muhammed Sa’ad Abubakar spoke at his palace in Sokoto….” Does the Sultan of Sokoto have another palace elsewhere? Let us think as we report.
“Pact with China conducive for peace, says Taiwan (Taiwan’s or Taiwanese) president”
“Otherwise, there is no point we engage in importing that much on yearly (a yearly) basis.”
“…he said though the institute has (had) developed 62 rice varieties for farmers, five most prominent varieties are (were) in circulation and are (were) doing very good (well).” Another reported speech misprint!
“NEMA, stakeholders meets over displaced persons” You can readily identify the boyish slip-up.
“With the LG polls now fixed for next week Tuesday….” Either next Tuesday or Tuesday, next week—no jumbo-mumbo!
Lastly from DAILY TRUST: “Replicate your performance to (in) your constituents (constituencies)”
“Security at airports: Police deploys (sic) sniffer dogs at (in) Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, 5 others” (AIT News, 4 p.m., February 20)
“PIB: Senate to re-open probe” (Source: as above) My comment: already treated.
“Absence of interpreter stalls trial of Portuguese woman charged for (with) drug trafficking”
“Thumb (Thumbs) up for Nigerian refs in Mali”
“Failure of Oduah to handover (hand over) stalls….”
The following five solecisms are from DAILY INDEPENDENT of February 18: “DHQ assures of continued offensive” Who did it assure?
“Battle for soul of Ecobank intensifies” So the battle intensifies itself?
“Harnessing potentials of local software industry in Nigeria” ‘Potential’ is uncountable, but we have ‘potentialities’,
“…who had at one point or the other (or another) been to Oyo State….”
“Tackling voters apathy in Nigeria” This way: voter apathy
SATURDAY INDEPENDENT of January 30 disseminated all manner of school-boy mistakes: “Fear has grip (gripped) notable politicians in Ebonyi State following findings by….” Most of the ensuing blunders were caused by sheer carelessness and loose thinking as the computer system has an in-built mechanism that detects most of the spelling errors contained herein.
“The discovery was made when the SSS arrested some kidnappers in the state alleged to be the brain (brains) behind high profile (high-profile) kidnapping in the state.”
“The SSS in the state said on Friday that it has (had) arrested….”
“…motorists were made to watch a bizzare (bizarre) spectacle, (needless comma) as four policemen beat a man gave (who gave) his name as…to a state of stupour (stupor).”
“The policemen, who drove to the scene in a patrol van with registration number KJA 284 AX, threw caution the winds (sic) (threw caution to the winds).”
“Federal University Lafia, (otiose punctuation) matriculates 380 students” Would it have matriculated traders? Just yank off the last word in the extract!
“My husband usually ask (asks) me to abort my pregnancy, woman tells court”
Finally from SATURDAY INDEPENDENT, a voice of your own: “Movie directors threaten sanction on (against) actress”
“They buy at N159 and sell at N167, the CBN has (had) addressed last year when….”
“But what the banks decided to do is (was) to even stop selling.”
“Middle aged (Middle-aged) man commits suicide in Jos…Police tries (try) to uncover his identity”
“IITA creates 40,000 jobs under cassava to ethanol (cassava-to-ethanol) project”
THISDAY of February 6 contributed to the pool of infelicities: “Budget: APC threatening the lifewire (livewire) of Nigeria, says PDP”
“Edo: Court remands killer cop (killer-cop)…”
“CBN said money is (was) missing from federation (the federation) account.”
“…their counsels and the judge so that people are not….” This way: ‘counsel’ is uncountable.
“What is (are) the police doing to investigate the case?”
“Who is paying the piper, dictating (calling) the tunes of the graffiti on the walls (sic)?”
“Under normal circumstances, either of these two men can represent….” (Vanguard, November 9) By the way: either cannot imply any other thing beyond ‘two’. So, avoid lexical blackmail.
“We need people of unalloyed intergrity in positions of trust.” Spell-check: integrity.
“Abia State has remained one splitted (split) entity that cannot move forward.”
“Though this dichotomy has endured for quite sometime now….” Politics today: some time (distinct from sometime).
“The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have persistently called attention to….” The union…has (not have).
“If after having being duely (duly) informed of.…”
“True, the treatment meted to (meted out to) detainees and ex-convicts, especially politicians like the recently released ‘Lagos boy’, depends, to a great extent, on the financial or social status of the prisoner.”
“If what the campaigners are doing is allowed to succeed, precedence (a precedent) would have been set.”
“…he had always shy (shied) away from politics but always manage (managed) to find himself in politics.”
“I think us poor Nigerians that only has (have) the rough edged (a hyphen) stick to hold at times like this….” Task forces as solution: a time like this or at times like these.
THE GUARDIAN of February 9 offered two unpardonable and extremely vexatious gaffes. “To round up the visit was the trip to the New Place, the site of the house where Shakespeare died. “ Get it right: round off (not round up).
”…the production was heavily spiced with new innovations which, however, still retained its original flavours.” ‘New innovations’ sounds illogical. An innovation cannot be old, relatively speaking. What do you think?
“What was the platform in which the cold war….” The platform on which the cold war.…
“Lack of towing vehicles hinder (hinders) FRSC operations”