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1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The study of language is an intriguing enterprise; this cannot be untraced to the roles it performs in the human everyday life. Language encapsulates all the aspects of our daily thoughts and undertakings. It is one unique attribute of man that differentiates it from other creatures on earth.Several attempts have been made to define and describe language by numerous scholars and authors, Crystal and Davy (1987), describe language as the systematic and conventional use of sounds, signs or written symbols in a society, for communication and human expression. From his own standpoint, Barret (1973) sees good language as that which is suitable and adaptive in a given communicative situation (communicative competence). It is that which assists in achieving a meeting of minds with listener’s and does not detract from the thought. Good language is language that serves to unify the speaker, the message and audience. It is language which gets the derived effect with the least friction and difficulty for the user. Chilton (1997), cited in (Rozina and Karapetjana 2009), is of the opinion that language is ‘the universal capacity of humans in all societies to communicate, while by politics he means ‘the art of governance’. It is no gain saying that not one of these brilliant scholarly definitions has been able to successfully capture the true essence of what language is. Notwithstanding this, a succinct description which is intriguing and at the same time very much relevant to this quest is given by Adedimeji (2005): Language mainly serves to form (or deform), inform, reform and transform man and his society all of which are harmonious with the goal of politics, making the two concepts symbiotic. He views language as being the most distinctive attribute of man; language has often exerted a lot of influence on the whole gamut of human affairs: political, educational, socio- economic, cultural, etc. he goes on to point out significantly that language and politics meet at the threshold of power.
Mazrui (1975) sees politics as a constant search for methods of resolving conflicting interests. When politics was described as a struggle to determine who gets what, when and how, conflict was placed at the very heart of political activity in terms of inputs of demands, which are processed within a political system.
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