1a. His name is Obasanjo Olusegun. (No)

His name is Olusegun Obasanjo. (Yes)

1b. Some people him Dr Olusegun. (No)

Some people him Dr Obasanjo. (Yes)

(First names are so called because they come first in English. A person’s name usually comprises his first name, middle name and surname. A surname may also be a last name. Titles are placed before the surname or the full name.)

2a. His names are Goodluck Ebele Jonathan. (No)

His name is Goodluck Ebele Jonathan. (Yes)

2b. His name is Goodluck Ebele. (No)

His name is Jonathan, Goodluck Ebele. (Yes)

His name is Goodluck Ebele. (Yes, but not usual.)

(One’s full name is singular. A first name comes first usually but if a surname comes first, it is either written in capital letters or a comma is placed after it to show that it is actually a surname.)

3a. We miss Alhaji Yar’Adua, Musa. (No)

We miss Alhaji Musa Yar’Adua. (Yes)

3b. Alhaji Musa was a friend of the masses. (No)

Alhaji Yar’Adua was a friend of the masses. (Yes)

Musa was a friend of the masses. (Yes)

(Generally, a title precedes a full name or a surname among the English. There are other conventions in other cultures. A first name does have a title before it.)

Did You Know?

The oldest word that is still in use is “town.”

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