– The Sun News

‘Birthday anniversary’ incorrect

“EFCC arrests Innoson Motors CEO after hours stand off” (sic) Voice of The Nation: hours’ standoff.

 “…your family on the occasion of your 75th birthday anniversary.” In this context, ‘birthday’ is the anniversary of one’s birth. So, ‘birthday anniversary’ is pleonastic.

“You have also restored the integrity of Nigeria among the community (comity) of nations, which had hitherto only saw (seen) a nation defined solely by corruption and inept and clueless leadership.”                                                                                                    

Let us continue with a visit to Champion House, Ilasamaja, Mushin, Lagos: “Soldiers take over troubled spots” (Daily Champion Headline, December 20) Let peace reign: trouble spots.

“Post election violence spreads” (Vanguard Headline, December 19) Towards a better life for the people: Post-election violence….

Yet another headline solecism from Vanguard of the next day: “Post poll violence continues” Solution as above. Somebody should inform editors at Kirikiri Canal of this recurring lapse.

“Man killed in car accident” (Vanguard Headline, December 19) Why not ’’Man dies in car accident?’’ He was not killed!

“Nigerian loses his life in a ghastly auto crash in Greece.” (DAILY CHAMPION, December 19) It was a fatal (not ghastly) auto crash.

“President Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday, expressed sadness over the sporadic violent protest (protests)….” (Vanguard, December 19)

The next headline blunder is from one of last week’s editions of this medium: “Police arrest four over Maiduguri explosion” Do we arrest the entire editorial team for (not over) lexical recklessness?

“Bribery enthrones mediocrity and crucify merit.” (Source: as above) The Tabernacle of bribery crucifies merit.

“Gang up against Buhari will fail” (NIGERIAN Tribune Headline, 15 December) Phrasal verb: gang up; noun: gang-up (which applies here).

 “We were treated to another similar incidence.…” All newspapers should know the difference between ‘incidence’ and ‘incident’ (which is the correct etymology here).

“Although the governor’s last minute romance with the main opposition party is held against him.…” Saturday People: last-minute (take note of the hyphen) romance….

“Thus, a core investor…with regards to optimal use of the machinery.…”  (THE GUARDIAN, December 12) Either: as regards or with regard to….

“In the heydays of the goggled General when fuel was often unavailable…” (THE GUARDIAN, December 20) Stranglehold of oil workers: heyday (uncountable).

“Last year, many houses of the Igbo in Ajegunle, a suburb of Lagos, were razed down.…” (THISDAY, December 20) No word abuse: simply razed (not razed down). Discard the contrary views by some registers!

Yet another headline gaffe: “Restrictions on inter-bank foreign exchange trading is (are) killing the market.”

“Armed robbers now have good company—street thugs and unofficial vigilante groups.” (THE GUARDIAN, December 20) Democracy as a disincentive: vigilance groups.

“2015: Jonathan points accusing fingers at INEC….” (DAILY TRUST, December 20) People in the news: Jonathan points the finger. No obtuse addition.

“Nigeria is at a crossroad” (VANGUARD, December 25) Fixed expression: at a/ the crossroads.

“Stationeries badly needed by.…” (DAILY INDEPENDENT, December 20) ‘Stationery’ is non-count.

“But what appears criminal is the desire of these off-springs of.…” (DAILY CHAMPION, December 20) ‘Offspring’ does not take any inflection.

The next three goofs are from VANGUARD of December 20: ”…the process of economic integration from which will emerge an economic block (bloc).…”

“There is a tussle going on between these two (would it have been three?) arms of government.”

“Nigerian leaders and politicians have continued to adopt and acquiesce to (in).…”

“Globacom sets (set) to rule domestic market” (Nigerian Tribune, December 20)

“I have been briefed that the wrangling among the leaders of PDP are (is) over.” (SUNDAY VANGUARD, December 24)

BusinessDay of December 20 disseminated an embarrassing impropriety: “Now that the Police has (have) taken over the supervision of the….”

“…and ensure it does not reoccur again.”  (THE GUARDIAN, December 20) ‘Reoccur again’? Run for cover, my dear reader! Just recur. Recur, recurrence, recurrent. Occur, occurred, occurrence.

“Lack of incentives anger (angers) local manufacturers” (THE GUARDIAN, December 20)

“They provide temporary relief.” (Source: as above) ‘Temporary relief? I strongly object to this clumsy expression because there is no permanence in ‘relief’.

THE PUNCH of December 20 circulated three solecisms: “The patients pay for each act of ‘healing’ through their noses.” Get it right: they pay through the nose.

“At the launching programme (launch) in Abuja.…”

“A cursory look at the figures show (shows) that.…”

Daily Sun of December 19 circulated copious shibboleths: “The end point is that people wait for between three to five hours to pay in their drafts.” English without tears: between three and five hours.

“With the attainment of the highest office at any strata of government….” Singular: stratum; plural: strata/stratums.

“It may be difficult for Alhaji Nuhu Ribadu to resurrect again politically after his disastrous outing in the presidential elections.”  Please, yank off ‘again’ in the interest of lexical sanity and our democracy.

“They better not rely on INEC.”  This way: They had better not rely on INEC.

“Like (As) we had said at various forums….”

“So, the government cannot ask the Supreme Court to interprete the law.” Spell-check: interpret

“…the reduction in the number of road accidents and causalities.” (National News, December 20)  This way: casualties.

 “…to that extent, we shall congratulate its authors for (on/upon) hearing the deafening cry of Nigerians for an effective legislature.” (Nigerian Tribune, December 20)

“…were simultaneously a continuation of the power-bloc struggle in Nigeria and unanticipated fallouts from that struggle.”  (DAILY CHAMPION, December 20) ‘Fallout’ is uncountable.

“…appeal to the discredited tactics of past times also wreak havoc on the procedural sanctity of the democratic path.”  (Vanguard, December 20) Notes of disquiet: pastimes.

“Out-of-control trailer crushes 15 persons to death” When people are crushed by a trailer, they cannot be alive except there is a divine intervention.  So, ‘crushed to death’ smacks of lexical insensitivity.



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