Language of Political Campaigns and Politics in Nigeria

Remi R. Aduradola, Chris. C. Ojukwu


Communication as a complex phenomenon remains vital to a sustenance of relationships and human existence. It is in fact, the oil that lubricates human interactions. Despite this significance, communication is a double-edged sword which can be used either positively or negatively. Boulton (1978, p.41) attested to the negative social intend of language from the perspective of its potential for complexity. She also observed that ‘’language is often used, not to communicate but to deceive. This is often true of political and religious propaganda... .’’ The intention to manipulate people’s mind and thought is symbolically expressed through print and broadcast media particularly, during political campaigns and in the eventual practice of politics in a given society. Using a purposive sampling method , the paper identified 51 samples but analysed 16 political messages and slogans reflected in the print media (billboard and newspaper-paid advertisements) during the 2011 electioneering campaigns in Nigeria. It was observed that man as a political animal engages in the practice of politics as a social and noble activity to express his political agenda either positively or negatively. Therefore, it was recommended that political candidates should endeavour to inform and persuade electorates rather than deceive or merely entertain them.


Politics; Political campaign; Language politics; Communication


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