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When and How to Use the Comma (,) in Texts

When and How  to Use the Comma (,) in Texts
Punctuation marks are symbols or signals that are used in sentence to make it easy for us to understand whatever we are reading. They are also signals which help to show how written words are intended to be spoken.
Punctuation marks are very powerful tools in English as they have the ability to retain or change the actual meaning of a text. Let's see some examples:

Speaker A: Let's eat, mum.

Speaker B: Let's eat mum.

The sentences above have the same structure, and are very correct but the placement of the punctuation mark, comma, gives them different meanings. Speaker A who is calling his mum to join him in eating his meal makes his message very clear by placing the comma (,) after the verb, "eat." However, speaker B who has the same intention with speaker A, ends up calling other culprits to eat his mum because he fails to place the punctuation mark (,) after the verb, "eat." His failure to use the comma has made him a murderer and a carnivore.

Note: Don't undermine the power of punctuation marks.

This tutorial aims at showing you "when" and "how" to use the comma when composing a text in order not to be like speaker B who derives pleasure in eating his mum.
The comma is used within the sentence. It indicates short pauses. It cannot be used at the end of sentences as it's an internal punctuation mark that enables us break the sentence into manageable units of thoughts to enhance understanding.

1. The comma is used to mark off separate words or items in a list. e.g. Tammy bought ice cream, fried rice, indomie, eggs and yam.
2. To set off nouns or pronouns in apposition. e.g. Our online English tutor, Tammy Reuben, is a handsome gentleman.
3. To show salutation and complementary close in all forms of letter.  e.g. "Dear sir,"  "Yours faithfully," respectively.
4. It is also used to replace conjunction in some expressions. e.g. Man proposes, God disposes. 
The comma after "proposes" would have been the coordinating conjunction, "but" but it is replaced with the comma (,).
5. It is used to separate parts of an address. e.g. Tammy's English House, 120 Abuloma road, Port Harcourt, is a home for all second learners of English.
6. To separate words spoken as direct speech from the rest of an utterance. e.g. The lady said, "It has been a fine day."
7. To break a sentence into convenient units of thoughts as to enhance understanding.
8. To separate phrases or clauses or transitional markers. e.g. When I was a boy, I used to be very shy. However, today, the reverse is the case.
9. To set off nouns in direct address, that is, a vocative from the rest of the sentence.

  • Tammy, I am talking to you.
  • Listen, Tammy, you were right.
  • My mum has been looking for you, Tammy.
10. Used before and after a clause that gives additional but not an essential information about the noun it follows. e.g. The houses, which are very useful to workers, are built in Port Harcourt.
11. Used between two clauses in a compound sentence. e.g. Tammy will be online today, but will not post any of his lessons.

Read about compound sentences HERE

From the foregoing, it is crystal clear that a wrong placement of the comma in a sentence can lead to a change in the actual meaning of the sentence. Therefore, your use of the comma should (at all times) be in accordance with any of the aforementioned uses.

On this Date, Registration for JAMB Direct Entry Examination Will Commence

Registration for the 2017 JAMB Direct Entry examination will commence on Thursday, July 13. This is a new date disclosed by a source from JAMB office.

Registration for the 2017 JAMB direct entry examination has been necessarily delayed due to some logistic and technical issues being faced by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) in the just conducted Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).
Following the reconduct of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) for affected candidates on July 1, 2017, the board will be fully ready for Direct Entry application on Thursday, July 13, 2017.

Regarding the closing date, I will you keep updated.

Reuben Abati Makes Shocking Revelations on the Just Concluded 2017 JAMB Examination

Former presidential spokesman, Reuben Abati, is at it again. In this article titled, "Matters Arising," he makes shocking revelations on the just concluded Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) even as he eulogizes Prof. Ish-aq Oloyede for a job well done.

Read the full article below:

I attended a meeting recently at the headquarters of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board in Bwari, Abuja: the post-2017 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination review meeting chaired by the JAMB registrar, Professor Ish-aq Oloyede. Participants included Professor Oloyede and his technical team, field officers and other staff, all the Chief External Examiners who supervised the 2017 UTME, across Nigeria, mostly Vice-Chancellors of universities, and provosts/rectors of polytechnics and colleges of education, in addition to major stakeholders from civil society.

The JAMB Registrar presented a detailed report on the conduct of the 2017 UTME, matters arising were identified and the meeting took certain decisions about the way forward, the details of which have since been published. The 2017 UTME was conducted throughout Nigeria between Saturday 13th and Saturday 20th May 2017, at 140 examination centres, 642 Computer-Based Test Centres, with 7,000 invigilators and monitors and 1, 722, 236 candidates.

It was the first examination to be conducted under Professor Oloyede’s watch as JAMB Registrar. He was full of appreciation for the efforts and contributions of everyone, including the civil society and security agencies who helped to ensure the success of the examination. The meeting noted that Oloyede and his team had also done an excellent job in organizing a commendable Computer-Based Examination across the country. In recent years, JAMB has insisted on computerizing its examinations, and under Oloyede, there has been not only an emphasis on this but also on the integrity and credibility of the examination. The Report presented by the JAMB Registrar was comprehensive, confident and informative.

In 2017, JAMB examined the highest number of candidates in its forty years of existence: 1.7million, with the highest number of participating external officials and monitors. The first point the meeting noted however, was that the figure of 1.7 m does not actually reflect the true number of candidates who sat for the examination. More than 300, 000 of the candidates engaged in double or triple registration, and where it could be established that any candidate sat for the examination more than once, such a candidate was automatically disqualified. A total of 666 cases were reported in this regard.

For planning purposes, the figure of 1.7 m was misleading, a fact that was worsened by the fact that more than 50% of the candidates do not even have the pre-requisite qualifications, and in reality, more than 70% of all candidates applied for courses in the Arts and Social Sciences, whereas for national manpower development purposes, the expectation is that the Sciences should produce up to 70%.

The message here is clear: higher education admission processes ought to reflect the country’s manpower needs, and there is no doubting the fact that at the moment, there is a mismatch between our country’s manpower production processes and the job market, and this is perhaps in a way responsible for the country’s unemployment crisis. As it were, Nigeria’s higher education system produces graduates that do not fit into the demands of the job market.
​Oloyede was more agitated about matters of integrity, credibility, accountability and transparency. He asked the meeting to take a close look at cases of examination irregularities and malpractice and take a decision. We were informed that a total of 1, 386 candidates all properly identified and documented were guilty of the following offences: impersonation, possession of prepared answer scripts, smuggling of foreign materials into the examination venue, possession of electronic gadgets including telephone, copying and spying from foreign materials, unruly behaviour, violent conduct, collusion, multiple registration and examinations.​ ​We were all shocked when Oloyede asked his staff to present to the meeting, concrete evidence of examination malpractice. We were shown shirts, with presumed answers written out in the inner lining, slippers, belts, handkerchiefs, and all kinds of strange devices that candidates across the country smuggled into examination centres.

It turned out that a criminal gang had developed around the UTME, involving persons who deceived candidates into believing that they had access to examination questions. Such questions with prepared answers were sold to candidates ahead of the examination. But according to JAMB, this was meaningless, because the examination questions were sent electronically to the centres only on the day of the examination, and JAMB did not use the same set of questions, at any time, either in the morning or the afternoon.

The bigger problem came from the operators of the Computer-Based Test Centres, who colluded with candidates and parents to compromise the examination. Many of these CBT centres collected gate fees, ranging from N2, 000 to N20, 000 and higher, they recruited thugs, they deliberately created technical problems to assist candidates to cheat (in some cases, the CCTVs installed by JAMB were either switched off or covered up); some centres also ran parallel communication cables to secret rooms where ghost candidates who had done what is called 8 x 2 fingerprinting, involving a candidate and a substitute, ghost-wrote the examination. Oloyede reported that JAMB did its best to track down all the fraudulent centres, across the country, 25 centres were involved in centre-induced malpractice, with 57, 646 candidates. Some other centres had technical issues, and in total, JAMB proposed that 72 centres in 18 states of the Federation should either be delisted or suspended.

We considered the report on every affected centre on a case-by-case basis, with each Chief Examiner responding to further enquiries, and at the end, the meeting resolved that 48 centres involved in extortion and malpractices should be delisted, while 24 centres should be suspended for a year. The statistics on 2017 UTME malpractice is noteworthy. Most of the affected states are from the South East and South South as follows: Abia (381 cases), Imo (193), Anambra (152), Enugu (114), Cross River (78), Ebonyi (48), Akwa Ibom (44) while the states with the lowest number of cases are from the North viz: Kebbi (1), Kaduna (16), Kano (29), Katsina (2), Kogi (7) Sokoto (25), Taraba (4), Zamfara (1). Yobe and Jigawa states had no reported case of examination malpractice, only 2 cases of multiple registration from the latter. Could it be then that students and CBT operators in the North are more honest than their Southern counterparts, or perhaps less computer savvy? Does the 2017 UTME say anything about national character?

Our deliberations did not cover this particular detail, but the meeting became more exciting when the involvement of parents, particularly mothers, was reported. In one centre, a mother was said to have approached the Chief Examiner to ask him to assist her daughter to pass the examination. The Chief Examiner reportedly told her to leave the examination venue, but she insisted that if the Chief Examiner was ready to help, as requested, she was prepared to pay in kind. The alarmed Professor and Examiner told her it was not part of his function to do what she wanted. The UTME, he said is a merit-based examination.

The woman, not giving up, asked for the hotel where the Professor was staying. She offered to join him in the hotel later in the day! In another state, an invigilator lured a young lady to the control room with the promise that if she would co-operate with him, he would help her to pass the UTME. Other invigilators caught the two of them and promptly reported the matter. When the young lady’s mother was informed about what had happened, her response was most unusual. She was not willing to press charges, or talk about the scandal. She was in fact not bothered at all. She would rather talk about something else. What did she want? She wanted JAMB to compensate her daughter with additional 10 marks or more, to make up for the sexual harassment. We were all alarmed. Strange things really happen.
Someone then remarked that JAMB should take a decision and ban mothers from following their children to examination centres and all husbands should be advised to keep an eye on wives who will go to any length to mislead their children. Again, the meeting did not concentrate on this delicate subject. But someone made a point: “You see this thing called corruption. It starts from the home. Many parents are setting very bad examples for their children. There is too much desperation in our country. The anti-corruption campaign should start with parents.”

Nonetheless, the meeting resolved that JAMB should introduce the use of electronic jammers at examination centres as part of measures to discourage centre-induced malpractice, the results of 1,386 candidates found guilty of examination malpractice should be cancelled, 57,646 centre-induced malpractice results should also be cancelled, while a supplementary examination should be held on July 1, for candidates who lost time due to the malfunctioning of servers, technical and log out issues, Biometric Verification related issues, late registration due to no fault of theirs, incomplete results and candidates of centres with mass malpractice but who are deemed innocent.

The JAMB Registrar further informed us that the examination body was ready to go to court where necessary to prosecute persons involved in examination malpractice, and that should any manager of a CBT centre find it necessary to challenge JAMB in court, he and his team would be glad to meet such persons in court. I like Oloyede’s spirit and the enthusiasm of his freshly energized team. The larger question is why examination, something considered a serious routine in other countries, is such a nightmare in Nigeria. Students cheat, parents collude with agents to help their children to cheat, examination consultants are worse, the kind of reports we receive daily about examinations in Nigeria sound fictional but they are worrisome because they are real. It is tragic that our public examinations are no better than Nigerian elections!

Just before the meeting ended, the representative from Akwa Ibom stood up and said he had a letter for the JAMB Registrar – one of the JAMB officials who served as a Proctor in Akwa Ibom state would need to assist the police with investigations into a case of examination malpractice and give evidence in court
“I heard about that case. I have directed that the lady should leave for Akwa Ibom and stay there until you are through with the investigations. Who is her direct supervisor?’, Oloyede asked​.​

One of the directors raised his hand.

“Ha. Doctor. That lady is excused from work until further notice. She should relocate to Akwa Ibom and assist with investigations. We will pay her DTA and provide whatever support she needs. Wherever there is any reported case, we must follow it up to prove that we will not tolerate any form of corruption or malpractice where our examinations are involved. The examiner from Akwa Ibom, you can keep her for as long as you want until you get to the root of the matter. Meeting! Approved?”

“App-ro-ved!”, we all chorused.

Niger Delta University: Requirements for the Collection of Original Certificate

Are you a graduate of the Niger Delta University (NDU), Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State? Are you done with your national service? If your answer to these two questions is "Yes", I will advise you go get your original certificate because delaying it will only cost you more when you want to get it.

When it comes to academics, the word "deflation" is very abstract as all you see and experience is "inflation." Yes, I am very serious. Last year, a colleague of mine, excluding other payments, paid the sum of ten thousand naira (N10,000) for the collection of his original certificate, but this year (early this month), I paid the sum of twelve thousand naira (N12,000) to get mine. Therefore, the earlier you get it, the better for you.

If you are ready, below are the requirements:

1. A handwritten or typed application letter for the collection of original certificate. The application letter should be directed to the Registrar through the Exams and Records Officer.

2. Original O' level certificate.

3. The sum of N1,500 for verification of your O' level certificate. If you used two 0'level results, you are to pay the sum of N3,000 for the verification exercise.

4. The N12,000 receipt for the collection of original certificate. This you are to pay at Diamond Bank (the one on campus). After payment, proceed to the Bursar's office to change your teller to the school's receipt.
5. The N3,000 Alumni receipt with the form attached to it. I am sure you made this payment before you were issued your statement of result. However, if you didn't, you need to visit the Students' Affairs office at new site to make this payment.

6. The N7,500 convocation receipt. All those who took part in the 4th convocation ceremony of the school should have this receipt. However, if you don't have it, you need to make payment for this.

7. Your statement of result.

8. Photocopy the aforementioned documents and proceed to the exams and records office for submission.

For clarifications, you can use the comment box.

All You Need to Know about JAMB's Supplementary Examination Scheduled for July 1st

It is no longer news that no fewer than 85,000 candidates will write the supplementary Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), which has been scheduled for July 1, 2017.

As a matter of fact, the board’s Head of Media and Information, Fabian Benjamin, in a statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja, explained that the examination scheduled for July 1, is to give candidates with issues of late registration and other related issues, the opportunity to rewrite the Computer Based Test which will be conducted in some Computer Based Testing (CBT) centres across the country.

Read his statement below:

Following an enlarged management meeting of the JAMB, the supplementary 2017 UTME has been fixed to hold on Saturday, July 1.

No fewer than 85,000 candidates are scheduled to write the examination. Affected candidates have been notified through text messages.

By this notice, they are advised to check their e-mail and profile for the schedule of their examination or visit the board’s website for their status.

Many of the candidates rescheduled for this examination enjoy this privilege because of the board’s principles of equality and inclusiveness.

It is better to let 100 offenders go free than to punish one innocent person. The board will enhance its monitoring of the examination as it would not compromise its sanctity.

According to  JAMB's Head of Media and Information, Fabian Benjamin, all those who will be rewriting their exams will be informed via three main channels as follows:

1. They will be sent SMS to their registered Mobile Numbers.

2. They will be sent mails to the Emails they used in creating their JAMB profiles.

3. They can login to their JAMB profiles online, where a notification showing whether they are qualified to rewrite the exam will be displayed.

To be on a safer side, all candidates are therefore advised to check their JAMB profiles online to verify if they will be writing. You know options 1 and 2 might not be too reliable due to network problem, which might consequently hinder the delivery of messages.

Affected candidates should then proceed to reprint their examination slips as from Monday, 19th June, 2017 to see the time and venue scheduled for them.

However, Fabian Benjamin, further pointed out that candidates whose results were outrightly cancelled and disqualified, following involvement in Examination Irregularities, will also be notified via SMS, Email and their JAMB profiles. According to him, these candidates are not eligible to rewrite the JAMB supplementary Exam holding on July 1st.

Undoubtedly, this decision was reached to ensure that no innocent candidate is unjustly punished.


1. The board announced that affected candidates for the rescheduled examination will be sent text messages to the effect of their qualification.

2. They should be expecting such notifications before 12 midnight of Thursday, June 15.
3. Messages will also be sent to their e-mail addresses. Their profile will also contain the information as it had been updated.

4. Also, all candidates whose results have been cancelled following their involvement in examination irregularities will also be notified through their emails, text messages as well as their profiles.

5. Candidates whose results have been cancelled are not eligible for the supplementary examination.

6. Candidates for the rescheduled examination will also be notified on the date and venue on or before Monday, June 19.

7. Candidates should check their result statuses to avoid being extorted by fraudsters who might want to seize the opportunity to exploit them.

8. Candidates are advised to avail themselves of the open door and inclusive policy of the board to seek clarification where the need arises, from any JAMB offices nationwide.

9. Candidates should not fall victim to fraudsters, unauthorized web operators and Computer based centres asking them of money to reverse the cancellation of their result or to check  information or the other.


Philips Ochoma Graces His New Single, 'KOMASI' with a Corresponding Poem

Philips Ochoma Graces His New Single, 'KOMASI' with a Corresponding Poem
I'm still wondering how a world without creativity would have been. In a world where our friends from the Sciences flaunt their self acclaimed intelligence, we in Arts and Humanities flaunt our intelligence through creativity.

Here is a new single "KOMASI", a song which is second to none by Philips Ochoma, a Linguist who is gifted with amazing phonation and whose creative prowess has won him the entertainment world. In this single, the "linguist musician" is placed in between praising God and giving Him different titles for who He is. He does these without hesitation. "KOMASI" is indeed second to none.


About Philips Ochoma

Philips Ochoma is a sensational Nigerian Christian singer and songwriter from Ahaoda, River State. This Young and amazing Music Minister and Worshipper of God whose everyday life is all about Jesus is pregnant with divinely inspired songs from heaven. KOMASI is the first of many to come.

Below is the poem that graces "KOMASI".


Echoes of hurrying feet summons heavens and the earthen
to the telegraphing jungle drums.
Its melodious peals woo the piano, guitar and tropical bassline,
as each strike and beat swells forth.
The impelling rhythm breaks in again, attaining a sublime height, as the song, *Komasi* in the earthly orchestra of gathering hands fly up a thousand mountains and hills to the holy of holies.

Blast of heavenly trumpets collaborates with the talking drums, the clanging bells, the knuckles of limbs of wood and irons and the rattling of cymbals, as dancers seize the streets.

The hills and mountains whisper in the ear of the clouds,
when earth and sky meet finally in the parliament of praise, as we wriggle our waists, shake our legs and shoulders nodding yes to the rumblings and medley of voices and chanting of panegyrics, saying: *komasi, komasi, komasi eni bi olorun*

8 Reasons Why Your Facebook Posts Command Few or No Likes

Humans are very complex beings. It is very difficult to please, satisfy or amuse humans, especially those from Africa. For any human on earth to truly love what you do, you must show a level of uniqueness, which only comes when you leave your comfort zone.

Facebook is a world on its own where people showcase their very best, and in turn, expect mind-blowing remarks from the persons settling therein. Of course, nobody hates appraisal; everybody loves to be eulogized for a particular action performed. 

Consequently, its users upload their best pictures, videos and write-ups. While some get high number of "likes" and propelling "comments" for these actions, the reverse is the case for others. This has inarguably kept the latter totally disillusioned and enslaved by this question, "why don't I get a good number likes?”.

Well, I bring you answers to your question which has been pending for long. In this post, I will tell you why your Facebook posts command few or no "likes". These reasons are:

1. Lack of connectivity between your posts and your Facebook friends.

Knowing your audience is an important factor in communication. Communication only takes place when your audience understands you. Your friends on Facebook are your audience, and you should know, to an extent, what they like.

Most times, you put up a post only you understand and expect to get more "likes" from such post. How is that possible? For your friends on Facebook to connect with your post and consequently react, they must understand that post. Therefore, learn to create that connectivity by making your posts understandable to a vast majority of your Facebook friends.

2. Your posts are not educative, and at the time, not funny.

Two most important things people will never cease doing on earth are "learning" and "smiling". Whereas they learn to know to more, they smile to ease themselves from sorrowful thoughts. That is why comedians keep making waves and schools keeping admitting new students every year.

There is no way you will write an educative or funny post that people won't comment or like. When I mean educative posts, I don't mean boring ones. Learn how to relate your educative posts with real life experiences because humans love real life examples. They connect with real life examples than abstract ones. If you are not good at writing educative posts, try making your posts hilarious. At least become a Facebook comedian/comedienne.

3. Your post is too lengthy

Brevity matters a lot when it comes to writing. Very few persons will take the pain of reading a lengthy post on Facebook. Therefore, it is very necessary you make your posts brief. This will at least attract more readers who will as well comment on or like the post.
4. Your post is stale or plagiarized

Try as much as possible not to copy anybody's post or share a post that had been in existence before you were born. Facebook users hardly comment on or like posts that they've seen elsewhere. I don't like it either. That is why you must learn how to write your own posts. That doesn't mean you won't share someone's post if you so love it.

5. Your friends on Facebook are very few

This also determines your number of likes. Most persons whose posts command 150+ likes, have about 3,000 - 4,999 friends on Facebook. I do tell people that if they have 500 friends on Facebook, and each of their posts commands  at most 20 "likes", they have higher number of "likes" than someone whose post commands 150 "likes" out of his 4,800 friends.

However, if you see things differently, you can add more friends to your friends list in order to boost your number of likes.

6. You don't like or comment on people's posts.

Remember respect is reciprocal. If you are one who hates commenting on or liking people's posts, don't expect people to like your posts too except you are a celebrity. Celebrities are the only people who hardly comment on or like their fans' posts but still command thousands of likes from their fans.

7. The Picture is not cute enough

You don’t need a soothsayer to tell you that ugly pictures or images don’t attract likes. Always capture the magical or hilarious moments. Nigerians don’t pretend at all. You can't force them to like what they don’t like.

8. You like uploading videos

Always have in mind that not all your friends on Facebook have the megabytes to view or watch your videos. Most persons will see these videos without even clicking on them. You don’t expect them to like a video they didn’t watch. Do you? If you must upload a video, let it be interesting and always be accompanied with a brief write-up.

I am cocksure if you work on any of the aforementioned reasons, your post likes will never remain the same.

Meanwhile, do you have any other reason in mind, you can add to the list through the comment box.

Some English Words That Have Certainly Embarrassed You

It is never easy speaking another man's language let alone writing it. However, a listening ear and constant practice will make you write any language effectively, even more than its speakers.

Some English Words That Have Certainly Embarrassed You.
One major problem with some second learners of English is that they learn the language with laxity, paying less or no attention to the rules of the language, regardless of the fact that it is an official language in their countries. Some who are aware that they are deficient in writing and speaking the language cover up their deficiency with this fallacious question, "who English epp?" If you are in this category, I advise you learn how to effectively write and speak the language as soon as possible because of its mutual intelligibility in the international community.

This article reveals some words learners of English have used and spelt wrongly. Graduates, undergraduates and even some native speakers are also culprits of this rampant crime. The wrong spelling is not as a result of an omission of a letter in these words but due to a breach of the rule governing the orthography of these words. Let’s look at the word "in fact". This is a word that is made up of two words ("in" and "fact"), and according to the orthography of the word, it is expected that you give a space after writing the first word "in" before the second word "fact". This word is a typical example of open compounding.  However, English learners write this word without observing its orthographical rule, and consequently, you have “infact". This word does not exist in any English dictionary. Other words that fall under this category are "a lot", "for instance", "at least" etc., which are now written as "alot", "forinstance", and "atleast" respectively by most English users.

The misuse of certain English words is also a common problem among learners of English due to their inadequate knowledge of the workings of the language. Some of these words are:

1. Mop vs Mob 
It is no news that most English learners will tell you to "mob the floor" rather than telling you to "mop the floor". This is a common error among Nigerian users of the English language. Please, do yourself a favour by checking out the meanings of these words. For the smart guys in the house, you can ascertain their meanings from the hint below.
Hint: Your living room is not clean because you mob it.  Until you decide to mop it, it will remain dirty.

2. Lose vs Loose
These words are not only pronounced wrongly but are also used interchangeably. Their difference in terms of pronunciation is in their last sounds. The former is pronounced /lu:z/ while the latter is pronounced /lu:s/. English learners tend to use these words interchangeably because they think these words have the same pronunciation. You can use the hint below to get their correct usage.

Hint: Lose a game and loose a knot.

3. Seize vs Cease 
These words have also slapped so many English learners on the face. Although they almost have similar sound, their meanings are different. To seize means to deliberately take hold of; to grab or capture (something) whereas to cease means to stop doing something.

Hint:  Pray without ceasing.

Tammy's pen was seized yesterday by his boss.

4. Waive vs Wave
These words are pronounced alike but have different meanings and spellings. They are typical examples of homophones.Their phonetic sameness has posed a lot of usage problems among undergraduates and graduates. Some are not even aware of the existence of the former. The consequence of this is that they always use the latter (wave) in place of the former (waive). That is why you see students write, "Senate has refused to wave the course" instead of "Senate has refused to waive the course". 

Hint: You wave at someone whereas you waive a course.

This Letter from Bauchi Will Make You Weep

This Letter from Bauchi Will Make You Weep
Despite the fact that I don't charge people for my online English tutorials, they have refused to learn. Some will even ask me, "who English epp?". “Wehdon sir”! My happiness is that the English language is no respecter of person. No matter who you are in the society, if you don't embrace it, it will embarrass you without a second thought.

This is actually a query letter from Toro Local Government in Bauchi State, signed by Abdullahi Mohammed on behalf of the chairman, Caretaker Committee. It is a query letter allegedly written to a staff that had in one way or the other gone against the stipulated rules of the Local government bye laws.
The Almighty Letter, page 1
page 2
This query letter is already queried due to the grammatical and spelling errors that marry it. Aside the grammatical blunders, there are spelling errors I would love to pinpoint.

1. The spelling of query. It is spelt as "quiry" instead of "query".

2. "Alleged" is spelt as "allerged".

3. "Partisan" is spelt as "partisant".
4. "Harshness" is spelt as "harshiness".

5. "Receipt" is spelt as "receint".

These are a few spelling errors I could see. The grammar on the other hand is something else. I don't even wanna delve into that.

This is really pitiable, embarrassing and heart breaking! Unfortunately, these are persons who lead some group of persons.

Who are we to blame for this? The typist or the writer?

Easy Way to Calculate JAMB/Post UTME Admission Screening Scores

Did you know that:

1. Candidates who score above 250 will gain merit admission by JAMB into their preferred institutions?

2.  The duration of the 2017 JAMB CBT is three (3) years for candidates with a score of 200 and above?

3. Scholarship may be awarded to candidates with a score of 280 and above in various institutions for a 4-year degree program.

Having known that, let's go to the crux of the matter.

Last year, The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, approved a new JAMB/Post-UTME admission screening system for all candidates seeking admission into various tertiary institutions in the country. It was called JAMB Point-System.

That was necessary following the scrapping of Post-UTME test by the Ministry of Education. It is now expected that the new admission screening system will take full effect during the 2017/2018 academic session admission exercise.
In order to keep candidates on the right track, I decided to lecture them on how to calculate Post-UTME admission screening scores with their O’level resuts, either WAEC or NECO.

Below is a breakdown of JAMB's Post UTME screening system.


1. O'Level Result: 40%

JAMB apportions 40% for O'level result. A candidate who made five As in WAEC or NECO, automatically gets 40%.

See more breakdown below:
  • A1 = 8%
  • B2 = 7%
  • B3 = 6%
  • C4 = 5%
  • C5 = 4%
  • C6 = 3%
  • Five A1 = 8% x 5 = 40%
  • Five B2 = 7% x 5 = 35%
  • Five B3 = 6% x 5 = 30%
  • Five C4 = 5% x 5 = 25%
  • Five C5 = 4% x 5 = 20%
  • Five C6 = 3% x 5 = 15%
2. UTME SCORES = 60%

JAMB apportions 60% for UTME and only candidates who scored 230 and above are qualified for this mark. Take a look at the breakdown.
  • 180-189 = 10%
  • 190-199 = 20%
  • 200-209 = 30%
  • 210-219 = 40%
  • 220-229 = 50%
  • 230 and above = 60%
Let's try a working example

Tammy wrote WAEC or NECO and had the following grades in these relevant five subjects:
  • Mathematics = B2
  • English = A1
  • Literature = C4
  • Government = B3
  • C.R.S = C5
Tammy's score will therefore be:
  • Mathematics = 7%
  • English = 8%
  • Literature = 5%
  • Government  = 6%
  • C.R.S = 4%
Making a total of 30%

Tammy then scored 220 in his JAMB examination and from the above explanation, 220 falls under 50%.

Therefore, Tammy's Post UTME score = His total WAEC/NECO Percentage + His JAMB percentage.

That is: 30% + 50% = 80%.

Tammy's Post UTME score is now 80%. Therefore, Tammy's chance of gaining admission this year is very high.