A new book by Dr Shey Peter Mabu seeks to correct errors commonly made by today’s users and also provides a guide for editors. “Communicating In Standard English: A Corrective Guide For Students And Professionals,” is the latest publication by Shey Dr Peter Mabu, a former Editor-in-Chief of the defunct Cameroon Tribune in English and today Deputy General Manager of the Cameroon News and Publishing Corporation, SOPECAM. Published by SOPECAM, the 165-page book has six chapters and is divided into three parts.
It costs FCFA 5,000. With foreword by John Nkemngong Nkengasong, Professor of Literature and Cultural Studies in the University of Yaounde I, the work seeks to improve the falling standards of English language. The errors pointed out include the use of prepositions, conjunctions, verbs as well as tautology, verbosity and misplacements. Similarly, the negative influence of French, Pidgin English and local languages is to blame for the wrong use of Standard English in Cameroon today. In order to correct these errors, the book proceeds by presenting sentences with wrong use and then their corrections. Far from delving into details on rules of English grammar, “Communicating In Standard English: A Corrective Guide For Students And Professionals,” is only a guide on proper English language use.
Other aspects handled in the book are different writing styles, often mispelt words, the use of irregular verbs and faulty French language translations. There is also information on editorial policy, legal hints for covering courts and how to process or edit articles. On the other hand, appendices deal with the Editor’s Code, glossary of legal and media terms and the Yaounde 1980 Declaration on the Communication Policies in Africa. According to Prof. John Nkemngong Nkengasong, “The corrective style of the book is simple and the approach used is unique and relevant. By the time the reader goes through it, he/she must have realized how much harm he/she has already caused the English Language through incorrect usage of its structures.” This book is Shey Dr Peter Mabu’s third work after the allegory, “Cleansing The Queen,” which was translated into French. The first was “The Cameroon New Deal, and The Teaching of Religious Knowledge in Primary Schools.”