JAMB UTME - Use of English - 1982

Question 1 Report

  I was on top of one of my palm trees yesterday, tapping the tree and collecting the wine for the morning when I saw two soldiers at the foot of the tree. They made signs at me, so I concluded that they wanted my palm wine. On descending from the tree I gave them the wine to sample, as is customary. Not only did they drain all the wine in the calabash, they said they had come to conscript me into the army. I ask them weather they wanted me or somebody else, and they said they had come for me. I asked them weather an enemy sent them or they came on their own. To cut it short, they said i was wasting their time s they had to catch twenty men that day. Only a foolish man willingly disobeys armed soldiers. I told them I had something very important to say.
‘Say it, then’ one of them cut in impatiently, looking at his watch. It was approaching midday, by which time it was considered unsafe to drive around in a car for fear of enemy planes which had learnt to strafe individual vehicles on the highway.
‘Yes, what I want to say is simple’ I said, ‘My first son, the boy who should have succeeded me when I died, joined the army voluntarily with my full backing. He was a brilliant boy, always first in his class. He was in his last year at school when the war began. He was killed. The two children who came after him are girls. The next boy is still in primary school. If he were old enough, I would have asked him to join the army not, minding that the fact that my first son’s head had already been sacrificed to the same war. For no person who breathes, will say that he has no part in this war.
‘But let me add this: - If this war has reached the stage when a man of my age is given a rifle by force and sent to the war fri9ont, then the time has come for you to blow the whistle and end the war. That is all I want to say!’.

The army was short of personnel because the soldiers