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Sep 2, 2017

An Unknown Semantic Error in the Advert of Nigerian Commercial Banks

The English language is no respecter of anybody. It beats both the weak and the strong with its complex wings. This time around, it reveals the language inadequacies of members of the financial institutions.

To attract potential customers, commercial banks in Nigeria always flaunt the advert: "Open an account and win a laptop". What this simply means is that every potential customer who opens an account with any of these commercial banks should be given a laptop instantly. However, at the end of the day, millions of persons go home without laptops, after opening accounts with these banks. I doubt if these banks understand the meaning of this expression. If they do, then it shows how we are being misled or deceived by these banks.

It is quite unfortunate one can't claim damages in a country like Nigeria. That is why I had wished I stayed abroad. If it were in the UK or the US, I would have opened an account with the bank and would have immediately requested my laptop. Whereby the bank refused, I knew I could claim damages for being misled by a bank advert encouraging me to open an account.

Well, I am very sure commercial banks in Nigeria are ignorant of the actual meaning of this expression. It is a semantic default. For them to be fair to potential customers, I advise they rephrase the expression. The advert should read: "Open an account and stand a chance to win a laptop"


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