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MIND YOUR LANGUAGE: Primary school pupils dropped out of ‘absenteeism’ to be readmitted

MIND YOUR LANGUAGE: Primary school pupils dropped out of ‘absenteeism’ to be readmitted

The ban from continuing with schooling slapped on school children who got pregnant may soon be over. It had been imposed in July 2017. A news item titled: “School dropouts to be readmitted”, and appearing on page 2 of the Good Citizen of 25 November, has it all.

The story writer quotes the Minister for Education as saying: “The government has found that it is better for the opportunity to be given to pregnant schoolgirls to continue with studies. Primary school pupils dropped out of ‘absenteeism’ due to different factors, would also be readmitted.

How do you drop out of absenteeism? If you regularly do not appear at a place where you are supposed to be, like your school or place of work, you could be accused of absenteeism.

We therefore believe that by: “Primary school pupils dropped out of absenteeism ……..”, the writer had in mind: “Primary school pupils ‘who’ dropped out of ‘school’ due to different factors, would also be readmitted”.

The move has been applauded by, among others, a top official of an Opposition political party who is reported as having: “commended the government’s decision, saying, the earlier move to stop, block, or exclude pregnant girls ‘from continue’ with education, was a wrong decision”. The move was to exclude girls “from continuing” (not: “from continue”) with education.

Ministers responsible for energy and water are in unenviable situation at the moment, as the country suffers from drought leading to water and electricity shortage. “Find solution to power woes” Businesses are reported to have told the government (Good Citizen, 2 November, page 2)

“Confederation of Tanzania Industries (CTI) advocacy and policy director, said industrial areas needed a very stable power if ‘manufactures’ were to operate at full capacity”.

Now, the word “manufacture” is a verb meaning to produce things. It is also a noun, meaning things that are being produced on a large-scale. Both meaning do not make sense in the quotation above. What did the writer have in mind by the word “manufactures”?. It looks like he was thinking of: “manufacturing plants” or “factories”. The sentence would then read as follows: “Confederation of Tanzania Industries (CTI) advocacy and policy director, said industrial areas needed a very stable power if ‘factories’ were to operate at full capacity”.

On page 7 of the same edition of the Good Citizen is a feature article titled: “The 2021 UN COP26 in the context of Green Economy”, in which the writer, tells us about, among others, the Economics of Green Energy: “Clean energy in the context of a green economy includes sources of power to be used at all levels that are renewable. They include power from such sources as wind, water and ‘solar’”.

No. We cannot talk of “power from solar”, unless we are thinking in Kiswahili, where the word: “sola” is a noun. In English, “solar” is an adjective, and is used before a noun. It comes from the Latin word: “sol” which means “sun”.

This is an example of a word, taken from one language into another, where it could be given another meaning, and is exported back to the original language with that new meaning. In our sentence, on green energy we have sadly to do away with the word “solar”. The sentence would be: “They include power from such sources as wind, water and ‘the sun’”. Yes. “the sun” instead of “solar”.

Why should we go for clean energy? Here is the writer’s advice: “Clean energy at household levels reduces incidences of ‘deceases’ caused by dirty energy.”

There is some relationship between “decease” and “disease”, though, I think, the writer meant “diseases”.

We end up by making a cursory reference to the machingas, who seem to be retaking the areas from which they had been evicted, which however, did not include “canals”, as the Good Citizen’s writer claims (24 November, p. 2). The writer must have had “drains” in mind! Cheers!

lusuggakironde@gmail.com

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Author: LUSUGA KIRONDE

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