By Joseph M. Mumbe
In Uganda, English language has been adulterated on a very large scale. The reason is that English is not the first language to the majority of us but the second or even third.
However, a language is a skill that can be learned and perfected just like ridding.
Just keep talking and talking or writing.
Here is a list of common errors part (2):
- Wrong: I go to school footing. Right: I walk to school.
Why? Footing is not a verb to mean walk.
- Wrong: I cannot cope up with you. Right: I cannot cope with you.
Why? The matching preposition is ‘with’
- Wrong: I wish I was not a teacher. Right: I wish I were not a teacher.
Why?[Were]is used in imaginaries (subjunctive) form.
- Wrong: Sorry, I did a mistake. Right: Sorry, I made a mistake.
Why? Light verbs: make mistake.
- Wrong: The price of this phone is higher than yours. Right: The price of this phone is higher than thatof yours.
Why? Comparison is between two objects; not object and person’s price. Use ‘that’
- Wrong: I prefer watching movies than reading. Right: I prefer watching movies to reading.
Why?Use preposition ‘to’ After word ‘prefer’.
- Wrong: Don’t borrow if you can’t return back. Right: Don’t borrow if you can’t return.
Why? Return means to bring back, avoid repetition. ‘Re’ alone means ‘again’.
- Wrong: I got the class discussing about lakes. Right: I got the class discussing lakes.
Why? Avoid using a preposition with word discuss. Transitive verb needs direct object. Talk about- not discuss about.
- Wrong: He has white hairs. Right: He has grey hair.
Why? Hair remains hair even in plural.
- Wrong: Senior one class is in the 2nd Right: Senior one class is on the 2nd floor.
Why? Correct preposition ‘on’ not ‘in’
- Wrong: I am a 19 years old boy. Right: I am a 19 year old boy. Or: I am 19 years old.
Why? Only use article ‘a’with singular verbs e.g., A four-member committee.
- Wrong: I don’t know the way how volcanoes are formed. Right: I don’t know the way volcanoes are formed.
Why? The ‘way’ is the ‘how.’ Don’t use both in a sentence. Use one of them.
The author is a Theologian and Educator
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