Tuesday, August 25, 2009

That's What She Said!

The last two posts have been about a little problem I had to help a couple deal with but the variety of responses to it has been interesting to say the least. And it seems to get more interesting by the day.

Let me also state here that there was no issue of breaking the relationship or calling off the wedding or such. I sincerely don't know if I gave that impression anywhere. We are trying to find a solution and you guys were already calling it off. Haba!

I have known the couple in question for quite a while and though I cannot say that I introduced them to each other, I have been quite close to them and know a little about the relationship. I have been like an Egbon to both parties and that was why they brought the matter to me.

Moreover, the Boss in the story is an acquaintance of mine and I am certain there is nothing going on between him and the subordinate. While he is not a saint, he operates on the maxim that 'elephants don't eat the grass under them'. If you know what I mean.

Definitive said:
"I think the main issue here is her fiancee OFFERED to come pick her up, but she PREFERRED to go with her boss, especially [when] she knew her relationship with her boss was already suspect, I definitely think she said the wrong thing. She should try and talk to her fiancee and sort things out. More like ask someone whom he respects to talk to him on her behalf".
Men are such jealous animals. She wounded his ego and that was his way of getting his pound of flesh. Anyway, that was my conclusions and the basis of my counsel. Thanks Definitive.

TemmyTayo also said:
" ... My yoruba is not perfect so I sometimes get into trouble with my husband too. But well, he trusts me. So when I say rubbish he gently reminds me how many meanings people can read into what i have said... "
It is actually more common than we want to admit particularly with couples who do not speak the have the same proficiency in the mother tongue. My wife speaks Yoruba very well but sometimes, I cringe at some things she says in Yoruba.

Several years ago, the then Bendel Broadcasting Service used to end their late night news bulletin in Yoruba with 'Ka sun re o' (May we rest in peace) to bid its listeners a good night's rest. After some time they changed to 'Ka sun l'ayo o' (May we rest with joy) which did not quite hit the mark too. Eventually they settled for the universal 'O d'aaro o' (Till the day break/morning).

Beneath that however was the issue of how some things we say can have more than one meaning and the alternative meaning usually carries a sexual connotation. In the US -I believe -the exclamation 'That's What She Said! is a statement used to draw attention to a phrase that could possibly be interpreted as sexual innuendo.

This occurs in every language. The Yoruba one about 'Eddie and Okonta' still cracks me up anytime.

Do you remember any one?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Re: Use of English

The last post was more of a call for help. Right now we are trying to douse a fire caused by what I think was a slip due to a wrong use of English.

It actually happened to a friend whose fiancee works in a consultancy firm. They are going to the altar in December; date and aso-ebi already chosen.

Unfortunately, she chose option A!

Every body believes there are some underG moves between her and the boss. My guy now says that she had been working there, with same boss for quite a while and despite the late hours and all, she has rejected all entreaties for her to find another job though she is very qualified. You know how all kinds of talk come out at times like this.

I think she is just happy where she is. But even Wifey says it was a slip, not a mistake.

I think it was just a problem of translating her thought in Yoruba to words in English. if you speak Yoruba quite well, please how else would you translate the following:

  1. Mo n'ba Oga mi lo s'ile.
  2. Emi ati Oga mi a jo ma lo s'ile.
  3. Oga mi ma gbe mi lo s'ile.
We are still trying to douse the fire caused by that slip. I just needed a woman's perspective to this and my wife is already biased.

Meanwhile, the poor girl has been crying her eyes out.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Use of English

You are a female professional; you have been at work all day and just about closing time, your phone rings; Its your significant other -husband, boyfriend, fiancee etc -and you have the following conversation. Choose the most appropriate answer from the choices provided:

SF: Hey babe,
YOU: Hey you.
SF: You sound tired; How has your day been?
YOU: It's been hectic, been on my feet all day, y'know sorting through so many reports and
trying to collate something for my boss. My feet are killing me right now
SF: Eeh yah, sorry... but have you had lunch?
YOU: Oh yes, we did ... my boss ordered Chinese and we had lunch right here in the office!
Can you imagine? The man has been on my neck all day!
SF: Ndo, so when are you getting off work? Will you be working late?
YOU: Ermm ... I should be done by seven or thereabouts?
SF: OK, I should be done by then too; I will pick you up on my way back home ....
YOU: How sweet of you, hon, but don't worry ..

A.) ... I am going home with my boss tonight ..
B.) .... my boss is taking me home tonight ....
C.) .... my boss and I are going home together ...
D.) ..... my boss is giving me a ride home ...
E.) None of the above. I would have said ..........................................................................

Remember, the wrong answer can wreck your relationship.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Inchoate Minini?

I believe that the judgments and pronouncements of the Supreme Court and indeed all the courts in Nigeria should be translated into as many local languages as requested by the litigants and other members of the public who are interested in or affected by the pronouncements as is done in India and some other countries.

While this will generate employment for the numerous graduates of Edo, Fulfulde, Gwari, Yoruba and Ijaw that we have, it will also help in clearing up any ambiguities that may be present in the said pronouncements before it becomes a big problem.

It also appears to me that their SC Lordships deliberately want to cause confusion with the kind of big grammar they use to describe rather simple cases. They use big words where simple words could suffice and refuse to simplify sentences so that whoever wants can choose whichever of the words apply to him since they mean the same thing anyway.

I am not a lawyer but the case(s) cited below are open and shut and straight forward to me, sans the contentious grammar.

The wahala between The Federal Government and the Lagos State Government ref AG LAGOS STATE vs AG FEDERATION (2004) can be summarized to be over the literary or judicial meaning of the word inchoate as used by the Supreme Court Lordships.

To the LASG, inchoate means valid but incomplete; i.e. its creation of 37 Local Governments was valid but subject to ratification by the National Assembly. They had even likened it to a baby that was born but not yet registered by the Registrar of Births. A baby just awaiting a 'naming ceremony'.

To the FG, inchoate means illegal and therefore invalid until approved by the National Assembly. Likened to a pregnancy carried beyond the term of 9 months and the said child cannot be named until it is born or at worst could be likened to a stillbirth with His Lordships as the morbid midwives.

We all know that it is partisan politics at play but the extent some people would go to just make a point is frightening. Some PDP stalwarts have even gone as far as to say that inchoate means non-existent, ultra vires, null and void.

Don't blame them. If only the SC declaration were translated into Yoruba.

Our ever hardworking Attorney General - and Defender of the Powerful - has been threatening to enforce the orders of the Supreme Court citing section 287 of the Constitution but curiously has not been able to pinpoint one single decision (order) made by the SC in that case. This is so because both parties in the matter ONLY sought and obtained declaratory reliefs. The FG got three out of nine while the LASG got four out of four.

A Declaratory Judgment only proclaims or declares what is the law, right and the existence of a legal relationship. It does not contain an order to be enforced against a Defendant which in this case was even the FG.

Besides, our AG must not be aware that a Bakassi Local Government was excised out of Nigeria recently but the said Bakassi LGA is still listed in the Constitution as one of the 774 LGAs in Nigeria even after the handover of Bakassi to Cameroun by the President on the orders of the ICJ . The National Assembly has not ratified/approved this dismemberment of the Federation and thus the action remains inchoate until this is done. Yet the AG does not deem it necessary to enforce this yet.

But of course, we know that as far as Yar a'dua is concerned, Aondoakaa is the law.

Another serious matter arising out of a SC judgment is that of Nnamdi 'Andy' Uba and his purported election as the Governor of Anambra state.

The SC had ruled that the election in which Andy Uba was purportedly elected as Governor of Anambra state was illegal since the office was not vacant as at the time of the elections. The said elections are considered null and void and never even took place in the eyes of the law.

Curiously, Andy and his supporters have taken this issue to ludicrous extents with some of his lawyers pronouncing that the SC judgment's legal effect evaporates on March 17, 2010 at the expiration of the present tenure of the Governor Peter Obi. he has since gone back to a High Court to declare him Governor from that date.

He has gone around calling himself His Excellency and his wife, Her Excellency because he was Governor illegally for how long? 20 days? What should Dr. Chris Ngige, who was Governor of the same state illegally for three years call himself? His Greatness?

His case is like that of a man who after sleeping with a married woman starts claiming husbandship. See why they needed to have translated that judgment into Igbo?

Forgive Me Blogger ...

.... for I have sinned.

In thought, in words and in deed.

I have forsaken thy updates and not updated my blog for so long.

I have called myself a Blogger in vain; I couldn't even remember my username or password.

I have worshiped other 'gods' apart from you. (Damn that Facebook!).

Forgive me Blogger, for I have sinned.

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