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African Research Review

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Language Can: Ensuring National Security through Effective Use of Language

FA Okeke

Abstract


National Security has been a challenging and disturbing issue in Nigeria. Several efforts have been made by national security agencies to provide effective and endearing security mechanisms, yet, the problem of national security has continued to rear up its ugly head. This paper is one of such efforts to show that ineffective language use can threaten national security while effective use can enhance it. Language use in interpersonal relationship is like a double- edged sword. It can be used to destroy as well as be used to mend. The present democratic dispensation in Nigeria has been characterized by several sheds of crisis situation, most of which have been connected to or existed in ineffective, inappropriate language use by political players. This raises the question of “political correctness” which argues about the relationship between words and “meaning”. The thrust of this paper has been to examine how ineffective language use threatens the desired security of the nation. It also exposed how effective language use could enhance the management and resolution of the already threatened situation which affects interpersonal relationship. Thus, the researcher examined and analysed some excerpts from a selected print media which are comments credited to top political players in Nigeria. The analyses have considered both the semantic and pragmatic imports as they affect the sociopolitical situations in the country.

Key words: Language, Language Can, Security, National Security, and Language Use.




http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/afrrev.v6i4.15
AJOL African Journals Online