Mood in Language: A Lexico-syntactic Analysis of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Covid-19 Sensitisation SMS


  • Ebenezer Deji Ogunrinde Federal University Oye Ekiti
  • Joshua Taiwo Ajenifari Kings University Odeomu



mood, language, lexico-syntactic, NCDC sensitisation SMS


Using data from widely circulated SMSes from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), this paper provides a lexical-syntactic analysis of language use by a government agency during the COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria. The framework used for the analysis is dyadic, encompassing tenets from semantic theory (which deals extensively with lexical choices as well as the determination of the meanings attached to them) and Systemic Functional Grammar. The analysis reveals that a writer’s selection of lexical items in a particular text is a reflection of his mood. This plays a significant and important role in the writer’s arrangement of the lexical items into peculiar sentence patterns in the text. Mood which is a system at the deep structure of Systemic Functional Grammar determines, to a very large extent, the language a writer employs in a text. Repetition in NCDC COVID-19 sensitisation messages is used to emphasize the importance of such words. It is meant to further convince the general public that only self-efforts or actions can prevent the spread of COVID-19 as majority of the repeated words are action stimulated words (verbs).

Author Biographies

Ebenezer Deji Ogunrinde, Federal University Oye Ekiti

Department of English and Literary Studies

Joshua Taiwo Ajenifari, Kings University Odeomu

Department of Language and Linguistics


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