10 Common Words Nigerians Use Everyday Which Don’t Exist

26 Jul

Many people speak English as their first
language. It is one of the most
spoken languages in the world.
Nigerians are very good at a number of
things and one of them is inventing
their own version of English which has
become popular overtime.
Some of the words and phrase we use
cannot be found in the dictionary. Some
words you picked up from others and
have become quite a norm. It is not
only the uneducated folks that are guilty
of using these wrong words as the very
educated Nigerians also use the
Englishlanguage inappropriately.
Below are words Nigerians use that
exist in the English dictionary.
1. Go-slow: When Nigerians say go-
slow, they mean congested traffic,
which is wrong. The meaning of go-slow
in the English dictionary is, a form of
industrial action in which work or
progress is deliberately delayed or
2. Disvirgin: This word is used on a
daily basis by many Nigerians when they
intend to say a woman has lost her
virginity. There is no word like disvirgin.
The correct word to use is deflower.
Disvirgin simply does not exist.
3. Trafigate: Nigerians use the word to
describe a situation where a driver
indicates to other drivers that he/she
wants to take a turn. It is used so often,
that it has started to sound like proper
4. Flashing: Every Nigerian knows
“flashing” to mean when someone calls
your mobile phone and cuts off before
you answer. The word ‘flash’ is so
common among Nigerians and its used
at least once daily by many. Flash has
different meanings but none has
anything to do with a phone call. The
word doesn’t exist in that sense in
5. Installmentally: Don’t be tempted
to use the word ‘installmentally’.
Though it soundscorrect, it isn’t. There
is no such word in the English dictionary
as it only exists only in the Nigerian
edition of English language. The correct
thing to say is ‘in installments’.
6. Opportuned: What exists in English
dictionaries is ‘opportune,’ without ‘d’ at
end. Opportune means ‘timely’ or ‘well-
especially convenient or appropriate for
particular action or event. Opportuned
is only
common in Nigerian English.
7. Cunny: This is a word which
Nigerians use to describe someone that
is being deceitful or crafty. The right
word is cunning not cunny.
8. Next tomorrow: Most Nigerians
generally use “next tomorrow” but
there is not suchword as next
tomorrow. Instead you should say, “a
day after tomorrow”.
9. Packer: Nigerians probably got the
word from pack. The right word is
dustpan. Sincedustpan packs dirt,
Nigerians like to call it packer.
10. Pepperish: It is common to hear
Nigerians describe a meal that has too
much pepper in it as pepperish. The
proper word should be ‘peppery’. No
native English speaker uses the word
pepperish” to describe the burning
sensation we feel from eating pepper.

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Posted by on July 26, 2016 in Uncategorized


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