The Jamaican Government is planning to send a formal petition to the Oxford University Press requesting that the word "Usain" be included in the dictionary as a common synonym for fast. Prime Minister Andrew Holness, speaking to reporters after a Cabinet meeting said:
“The Cabinet met and we decided that with our greatest athlete Usain Bolt scheduled to retire this year after the World Championships, we need to honour him further. Many of my ministers came up with suggestions but we still couldn’t reach a proper consensus. It was then that I got this brilliant idea, why not send a formal letter to the Oxford University Press petitioning for the word "Usain" to be used as a common synonym for the adjective fast?”
Mr. Holness continued:
“They all seemed to be in agreement. “That’s a great idea Andrew.” They said."
He went on:
“I was satisfied that they liked the idea so we then decided to draft out a formal letter to the OUP.”
As he showed a copy of the letter which he proceeded to read out:
“Dear Oxford University Press,
It is with great humility that we the democratically elected Government of Jamaica hereby beseech you - the great exponents and experts of the English Language, pleading that you graciously accede to grant us this formal request. As you know, our greatest athlete Usain Bolt is scheduled to retire in August of this year after the World Championships which your great city London will be hosting. With Jamaica being a former colony of Great Britain, we have a strong connection. It is because of Great Britain that we play the Gentleman’s Game - cricket in Jamaica. Cricket is the most popular sport in the English-speaking Caribbean and it is because of the British and their introducing cricket to our shores that we Jamaicans and by extension the other islands of the English-Speaking Caribbean have a sport that basically unites us all and we can put aside our differences for just a few hours and enjoy ourselves. Even if the West Indies are losing.
It is a well-known fact that many great British athletes have Jamaican roots and a lot of them have contributed immensely in making Great Britain a superpower in the sporting arena. Names like three-time World and 2012 Olympic Champion in the Women’s Heptathlon, Jessica Ennis-Hill, Athens 2004 double Olympic Champion in the Women’s 800M and 1500M - Dame Kelly Holmes and 100M Olympic Champion in Barcelona ’92 - Linford Christie come to mind.
But of course that sporting contribution is not only in the arena of Track & Field. On the Football pitch players with Jamaican heritage have played a vital role in making the Barclay’s Premier League the best Football League in the world. We have the likes of Manchester United’s and England’s best current Centre-back Chris Smalling who is of Jamaican parentage, Manchester City Midfielder Rahim Sterling who was born in Kingston and Liverpool Striker Daniel Sturridge, who, although born in Birmingham, has grandparents who are Jamaican.
Now on to Usain Bolt. Everyone knows that Bolt is one of the world’s most famous athletes and he is well-respected, admired and appreciated everywhere he goes and wherever he competes. His achievements on the track are phenomenal and he is definitely on another level when it comes to competing. From the time he made his first major impression on the world stage at the Beijing 2008 Olympics with his triple gold in the 100M, 200M and the 4X100M relay to Rio 2016 where he continued his winning ways, Bolt has always been clean throughout his illustrious career. Even though he was stripped of the gold medal from the relay win at the 2008 Olympics due to a team-mate’s use of PED’s, Bolt’s reputation has always remained intact. To win eight gold medals in three consecutive Olympics is no easy feat. In addition to which, he has been a World Champion on no less than eleven occasions and owns the World Record in both the 100M and 200M. He was even named World Athlete of the Year by the IAAF on a record six occasions; with his latest win being as recently as last year - 2016, after his exploits in Rio.
Taking all of the afore-mentioned factors into consideration, we humbly implore that you grant us our request of making the word “Usain” an official synonym for the adjective fast and including it in the Oxford English Dictionary.”