IDEATIONAL MEANING IN THE CHANGE AGENDA MANIFESTO OF THE ALL PROGRESSIVE CONGRESS (APC) OF NIGERIA

IDEATIONAL MEANING IN THE CHANGE AGENDA MANIFESTO OF THE ALL PROGRESSIVE CONGRESS (APC) OF NIGERIA

ABSTRACT

This study is a descriptive analysis of the manifesto of the all progressive congress presidential aspirant Muhammadu Buhari using M.A.K. Halliday’s systemic Functional Grammar as the theoretical model for the analysis and discussion of the speeches selected based on the cluster (Area) Sampling technique to investigate how the president employed linguistic and rhetorical devices to achieve his political aim of convincing the electorate to vote for his party and woo them to cooperate with his government. The Systemic Functional Grammar was extensively deployed by the researcher to account for the roles of linguistic features in the interpretation and evaluation of this manifesto; hence, unfolding the underlying linguistic and persuasive strategies employed by the president in his expressions. The president employed more simple sentences than other structural typologies in the manifesto. The dominance of the simple sentences resulted in the over simplicity in the syntax of his expressions which made for easy flow and conveyance of his massage to the audience. The imperative sentences in his manifesto were used in achieving his political goal of convincing the electorate to vote for his party (APC). Aside the use of nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs, he made use of personal pronouns ‘I’ and ‘we’. Significantly the dominance of the pronoun ‘I’ portrayed the president’s personal commitment and sense of duty; also the collective pronoun ‘we’ indicated collective responsibility of Mr. President and members of his cabinet, while the possessive pronoun ‘our’ signified his drive for all inclusive governance. The president made use of some figures of speech such as alliteration, repetition, rhetorical question, personification and acronyms. Not only to add aesthetic value to his expressions but to achieve his intention. This study revealed that language and politics are inseparable; and that English language has become an indispensable tool of politicking Nigeria.