NATIONAL VALUES

TYPES OF CONSTITUTION

There are various types of constitution, among which are the following. 1) FEDERAL CONSTITUTION A federal constitution refers to one in which government powers that exist in the country are shared between the two tiers of government – a central government that represents the country and the government of component regions or states, so that each government is legally and constitutionally independent and autonomous. A country that adopts this type of constitution is known as a federation and the system is referred to as a federal system of government. The federal polity in other words, provides a constitutional device for bringing unity in diversity and for the achievement of common national goals. K.C. Wheare defines federal government as “an association of states, which has been formed for certain common purposes, but in which the member states retain a large measure of their original independence.” A federal constitution has the following features: Constitution should be a written one. Rigid procedure of amendment. Distribution of powers between state and centre. Supremacy of judiciary.   Examples of countries operating a federal constitution are as follows: Nigeria, USA, Austria, Brazil, Germany, Ethiopia, India, Argentina, Switzerland, Comoros, etc.   Merits of Federal Constitution It is suitable for a country having a diversity of race, religion and language. Local needs are met effectively. Responsibilities of the central government are lessened. People get training in the act of self-government. Small states can have dignity and be safe from foreign aggression.   Demerits of Federal Constitution It is inefficient because of diversity of law and administration. There is always a tug-of-war between – national and local interests. It is highly expensive.   2) UNITARY CONSTITUTION A unitary constitution refers to one that concentrates governmental powers and authority in a single central government or legislature. All power is top down. A unitary state is a sovereign state governed as one single entity in which the central government is supreme and any administrative divisions (sub-national units) exercise only powers that the central government chooses to delegate. Examples of countries with unitary constitutions are the United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Kingdom of Norway, Benin, Burundi, China, Cuba, Fiji, Iran, Israel, Afghanistan, Czech Republic, East Timor, Egypt, etc.   Merits of a Unitary Constitution Strong government: It is a source of strong, stable, all powerful government. Single Administration: It ensures uniform administration for the whole of the state. Simple and less expensive Flexibility in Administration: It can easily adapt to changing social needs and environment because the central government can amend the constitution as and when required. Suitable for small states: Due to its simplicity, less expensiveness and strength. Responsible for its work: Since a single government runs the whole show, the responsibility of any lapse can be easily fixed. Can be very useful in meeting emergencies: being an all-powerful government, the central government can take all necessary decisions quickly and implement these with full force.   Demerits of a Unitary Constitution Central government is excessively powerful: There is a likely possibility for central dictatorship or despotism over local areas. In the works of E.B. Schulz, “The primary objection to the unitary system is the lack of formal safeguards against centralization of government functions”. Danger of inefficiency: The central government often behaves inefficiently because of being overburdened with all the work. Ignores local needs: it very often fails to satisfy local needs because of being located at the central and faced with pressing national problems. Unsuitable for big states: It is only suitable for small and homogeneous states. More dependent on bureaucracy: It is more bureaucratic. Less chances for popular participation in the working of government: It provides less opportunities for political participation of the people being a system governed by a single central government. Less of local autonomy and initiative: It is less democratic and thus, kills local initiative and discourages popular interest in public affairs.   3) CONFEDERAL CONSTITUTION The constitution reserves powers to the central government in only certain matters that affect all the nations or autonomous states involved. Confederal constitution makes the component states very powerful, while the central government becomes weak. In confederation, the component states retain sovereignty, identity, own army, and the constitutional right to secede from the confederation. Examples of confederations are UNO, ECOWAS, EEU, IBRD. Countries whose constitutions are close to that of a confederation are Belgium and Canada.   Advantages Decentralizaton of power: the states are the decision makers, legislation and execution is divided among the provincial and local governments, thus reducing the risk of the centre turning into a dominant union or tyranny. Cooperation: It makes every state independent and sovereign unit of the federation. Agreement among these equals makes decisions over common issues easier.   Disadvantages Financial powers: a major drawback of this system is that, the centre does not enjoy any power regarding taxation. Sustenance: It is not popular across the world. This type of government is not a long lasting one because it is seen as a transformation period (as countries are seen as transforming from a confederation to a federation).

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DEMOCRACY

According to one time American president, Abraham Lincoln, democracy is defined as “The government of the people, by the people and for the people”. This is the system of government in which people participate by exercising their political power (i.e. voting) through periodic election of their leaders by themselves or their representatives. The word democracy has its root in ancient Greek. The words DEMO and KRATIA which form democracy mean people and government or “rule by people”. Generally, in a democracy the people are sovereign which means that, they are the ultimate source of authority. Furthermore, we shall be looking at the meaning of democracy from two perspectives, viz.: Political democracy. Economic democracy.   Political Democracy: It means that political power of the state is equally shared by the citizens. Citizens have the power to legislate, which they perform by delegating this function to their elected representatives. In a political democracy the state is self-governing and citizens make decisions that concern the state’s progress and development without external influence or interference. Decision making resides with the people as well as the presence of basic freedom of citizens. Economic Democracy: It means everybody who contributes to production is entitled to have his share of wages and allowances. Here, every contributor/worker has a say in the decision making process as in what to produce, how to produce, where to distribute, what the price should be, etc. There is a paradigm shift in decision-making power from corporate managers and a few capitalists to larger groups of public stakeholders that include workers, customers, suppliers and the broader public. It encourages economic decentralization, formation and growth of cooperatives, and reduction of the powers of monopolies/ concentration of wealth.   PLACE OF POPULAR PARTICIPATION IN DEMOCRACY. Popular participation can be defined as the active involvement of citizens in the socio-political activities of a country. It can also be seen as the practice of involving people in the governance of their country and decision making on important socio-cultural, political and economic issues. Political participation affords citizens the opportunity to communicate information to government officials about their concerns and preferences and to put pressure on them to respond.   Types of Political Participation There are various ways by which citizens involve in decision making. These are as follows: Voting in elections. Working in and contributing to electoral campaigns and organizations. Contacting government officials. Attending protests, marches and demonstrations. Working informally with others to solve some community problems. Writing a letter to a public officer. Joining an activist or interest group. Holding a public official position. Public consultation commonly known as town hall meetings. Jury duty; which ensures that people who are charged with a crime are judged by people like them rather than a single person, such as a judge. Blogging about a public issue. Donating money to a cause. As long as the activity involves ordinary citizens expressing their opinions by contributing to the political process, we can probably assume that it is a form of political participation.   Importance of Popular Participation Popular participation promotes political awareness and education. It fosters political stability. It promotes self-fulfilment and satisfaction of citizens. It encourages development. It ensures responsive and responsible government. It promotes popular consciousness. It enhances confidence of the people to hold government accountable. It promotes a sense of belonging amongst the people. It influences the direction of government policies. It enhances collective effort in the development of the political system. It improves the quality of governance. It ensures equity in the allocation of societal resources. It ensures every member of the society is carried along in the process of development. It enables people to gain socio-economic and political power.   FORMS OF DEMOCRACY 1) Direct Democracy: This is a system of government in which public decisions are made by the people directly, rather than by elected representatives. Direct democracy was possible in the past due to low population. It was practised in Greece, although elements of direct democracy exist in California’s (USA) referenda, initiatives and recall elections.   2) Representative or Indirect Democracy: This is a form of democracy in which people vote for or elect representatives who will represent them in parliament and at other levels of government. Representative democracy was pioneered by Roman Republic. Examples of these representatives are the president, governors, local government chairmen, senators, counsellors, etc. It is practised in Nigeria, Ghana, France, United Kingdom, U.S.A ., South Africa, etc.   Characteristics of Representative Democracy Multi-party system: The existence of several parties. Majority rule and minority rights: The wish of the majority prevails while the desires or say of the minority is not neglected. Existence of organized opposition: Other parties not in power. Universal adult suffrage: Eligible adults exercise their right to vote. Independent judiciary: Non-interference in judicial proceedings. Periodic elections Electoral body: Independent electoral body e.g. INEC. Freedom of the press. Separation of powers: Among the three arms of government i.e. the executive, legislative and the judiciary. Political equality: Equal opportunities should be given to every citizen for unrestricted participation in the political process.   Constitutional Democracy: This is the type of democracy where powers of the majority are exercised within a framework of the constitution designed to guarantee the majority rights. In this type of democracy, how the people are to be ruled and governed are stated in the constitution.   Characteristics of Constitutional Democracy Popular Sovereignty: The people are the ultimate source of the authority of the government. Minority Rights: The fundamental rights of the minorities are protected. Limited government: Government exercises its power within the ambit of the law (constitution). Basic freedom: As enshrined in the constitution. Majority Rule: Guarantees leadership rights to the people.   RULE OF LAW The rule of law is a legal principle that stresses the supremacy of the law over every other consideration. It also implies that the law should govern a nation, as opposed to being governed by unpredictable decisions of individual government officials. Rule of law emphasizes that every citizen must act in accordance with the law. The concept was made popular by Professor A.V. Dicey in his book “An Introduction to the Study of the Law of the Constitution”.   Principles of the Rule of Law Principle of impartiality: This ensures that no one is punished of any offence except he/she has been found guilty by the court. Principle of equality before the law: This ensures that everyone is treated equally Principle of fair hearing: It states that everyone arrested for an offence should be listened to through the normal court process before judgement is passed. Principle of supremacy of the law: This principle holds the law as sovereign or that the law of the land is always the final authority. Right to appeal: This states that when a person is not satisfied with the judgement of the lower court he/she has the right to appeal the judgement by applying to a higher court.   EXAMPLE OF DEMOCRATIC SYSTEMS City States of Ancient Greece where democracy was first practiced: This was around the 5th century BC. The main bodies in the Athenian (Greece) democracy were the assembly composed of male citizens; the boule, composed of 500 citizens; and the law courts, composed of a massive number of jurors chosen by lot with no judges. Igbo village democracy: where each family has a representative in the community decision-making council; there is no formal system but each unit head serves as a representative, they operate decentralized system of government. Modern democratic systems as it is operating now in nations of the world such as Nigeria, Ghana, India, USA, UK, France, Germany, Norway, Greece, Italy, etc.   HOW DEMOCRACY WORKS Citizens should be allowed to participate in the government of the country. The government allows different political parties to participate. People are allowed to elect their leaders through a free and fair election. The principles guiding democracy should be strictly adhered to. Political institutions should be strengthened and made more independent. Freedom of the press: people should be allowed to express their opinion freely and criticize the government.   CHARACTERISTICS OF DEMOCRACY Authority emanates from the people. There must be rule of law. There is liberty for the citizens. There must be majority rule and minority rights. There must be periodic election. There must be equality before the law. There must be independence of the judiciary.

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COMMON SOCIAL PROBLEMS IN NIGERIA

The following are some of the social problems prevalent in Nigeria today. Examination malpractice. Cultism. Corruption. Poverty. HIV/AIDS. Prostitutions. Rigging of elections. Political killings. Ritual killing. Area boy syndrome.   EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE Examinations are set at various levels of education to assess pupils, students and those ones at higher institutions of learning in order to get feedback as to whether they understand what they have been taught. Examination may be in form of practical exercise, written type or oral form but the essence is to get those who are qualified to be promoted to the next level of education.   These are examinations that are peculiar to Nigeria. Common entrance that leads to the award of primary six leaving certificate Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination which leads to the award of ordinary level certificate. University and tertiary matriculation examination. This body conducts examination for prospective higher institution students. Besides, examinations are conducted at various higher institutions such as colleges of education, polytechnics, universities in Nigeria and some other institutions, like college of health technology, etc. It should be noted that all these examinations at various levels are expected to maintain high level of standard and perfect decorum during examinations. All rules and regulations of the examinations must be kept. What we see in our society is that very many people engage in examination malpractices. Examination is a means by which student’s knowledge of the curriculum is evaluated, therefore, any action or reaction that does not conform with rules and regulation or standard set for the examination is known as examination malpractice or examination malpractices are any act which does not make the assessment or evaluation of performance of those who unite reliable. Dayo Oguniyi and other reported that examination malpractices started long time ago in Nigeria. He puts as follows: The Cambridge school certificate examination (CSCE) leaked in 1914. General leakage of the West African School Certificate (WASC) examination conducted by the West African Examination Council (WAEC) in 1963. The same examination body experienced another general leakage in 1968. More cases of examination leakages occurred from 1981. In more public examinations like Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) and University examination, a decree was promulgated as examination malpractice Act 33 of 1999. This Act gave severe punishment to offenders.   FORMS OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE Writing before exam on examination desk. Taking prepared answers into hall. Impersonating another candidate. Copy answers from other students. Writing on body parts before examination.   CAUSES OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE There are many reasons for examination malpractices in Nigeria, they are divided into major and minor. Family. Social view about some courses. Discrimination between the federal and state own institutions. Quest for white collar jobs. Indiscipline among some of school operators. Unemployment.   Family: The first agent of socialization, the basic training about life starts from the family which has to do with family first before the large society. If a child lacks home training, definitely he/she will involve in immoral behaviour such as examination malpractice. A family that is highly religious will not lack moral content and this will reflect on their wards. Societal view about some courses: This is one of major causes of examination malpractice, some parents did not like or want their children to study some courses such as History, Yoruba language, French etc ., but to study Law, Medicine, Pharmacy, English language, Mass Communication, etc. This spurs some candidates to engage in examination malpractice. Discrimination between federal and state owned institutions: Some parents and their wards want to gain admission to federal institutions because of social prestige; they therefore use every available trick to pass entrance examinations to higher institutions. Quest for white collar jobs: Many students understand the fact that without a good certificate, government cannot employ, that is, the certificate that someone possesses will enhance their getting a white collar job, so students who value and respect it engage in dishonest practices during examinations for the sake of job security. Unemployment: This cause is noted mainly among some unemployed graduates, they constitute themselves in groups during ordinary level examination in order to help their candidates across centres in Nigeria. They do this because of poverty. Many of them are being arrested by the police.   MINOR CAUSES OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE IN NIGERIA ARE: Supervisor(s): Some supervisors are greedy and not satisfied with what the examining body prepares to offer for their service, so they allow students to bring in prepared answers, even textbooks, into the examination hall. Parents/P.T.A and School Head: Some schools via their Parents Teachers Association representative collude with school head to allow examination malpractices. Some parents specifically inform school head to assist their ward during examination by this the school head will involve each subject teacher. This happens mostly especially in private schools. They comply because of the huge amount of money parents have paid into the school and the proprietor or proprietress will not like the business to collapse. Competition Among State Government: Each state wants to be rated high among the comity of states, they therefore use every means to compel school heads in their various states to ensure that they emerge first in any national examinations. The school administrators will also compel all subject teachers to work at all cost and ensure students pass their subjects. Laziness: Many students are not serious with their studies, they cannot sit down and read they therefore resort to cheating during examinations. Disrespect for Social Values and Ethics: In those days, students were determined to read and did not expect manna to fall, but today, the reverse is the case. Our social values and ethics are gone. Internet Epoch: The presence of internet has worsened the situation. Just name any subject, question(s) and solution(s), you will find whatever you want via the internet. So many students still bring cell phones into examination halls for examination malpractice.   CULTISM What is a cult? It is a small group of people with belief which is not part of our religions in Nigeria. This group is not open to the entire populace. Their members are referred to as cultists. Therefore, cultism is described as activities or practices of cultists (which are not open). Their belief spans across, helping, protecting and supporting their members in all areas of life. They do things secretly because their deeds are anti-social. They kill, kidnap, assault, steal, rape, etc.   Kinds of Cult Groups in Nigeria Traditional cult group. Political cult group. Religion cult group. Student cult group. The last kind of cult group occurs in our higher institutions of learning and is not new in our society. Recently we learnt some secondary students are involved in this illegal society. They had been dealt with. Some anti-social behaviour of these cult groups on our campuses are destruction of life and property, causing mayhem, and disruption of the academic calendar. Many of them that were caught had been rusticated and their names entered into a black book. Their life-destiny has been destroyed, they cannot do anything good in the country e.g. they cannot contest an election, history will be told.   NAMES OF FEW CULT GROUPS IN NIGERIA Black Berets. Red Berets. The sharons. The scorpion. River angel. Eiye confraternity. Buccaneers. Prates. Black Bras. Black Axes confraternity. War Lords. The jurist. Daughters of Jezebel. White angel. The Vikings. Red Devil. Jezebels. Pyrates confraternity. Ogboni society. Dibia. Ekpe, etc.   THE CAUSES OF CULTISM Ignorance. Youthful exuberance. Peer group influence. Drug Abuse. Lack of parental care. Influx of arms and ammunitions. Idleness. Campus politics security.   Ignorance: Some students find themselves in cult groups due to ignorance, this occurs as a result of the fear they allowed into their minds about some of their school mates. Some of them are invited to meetings they do not know anything about, before they understand it they are initiated. Youthful Exuberance: Some youths like to display their vigour in cultism. Peer Group Influence: Some youths are influenced by their age grade to join cult group. Drug Abuse: Many cult members are drug addicts, they join cult group under the influence of misuse of drug. Lack of Parental Care: An adage says “Charity Begins at Home” A child who lacks parental care will have tendency of becoming things in the society. He/she will lack moral content by so doing, he/she will join cult group. A father who is also a member of a cult group will see no reason why his ward should not join any cult group of his/her choice. Influx of Arms and Ammunitions: It should be noted here that, illegal trafficking in arms and ammunitions seriously encourage cultism in Nigeria. When weapons for battle are ready, the warriors will be happy to fight. If they were armless, no one will go for battle. Idleness: An adage says, “An idle hand is devil’s workshop” when students or youths are busy doing nothing it is highly possible to involve in illegal activities. Many cult members are dull intellectually, they are lazy, they join in order to cover up their weaknesses. Campus Politics: Some youths join cult group in order to succeed in their political career right there in the school. Some of them vie for positions like students’ union government president, general secretary, public relations officer, etc. they join cult group for protection and to have more votes. Security: Some youths especially ladies join cult group for protection sake. They have neglected the fact that protection comes only from God.   CORRUPTION This is the act of corrupting or of impairing integrity, virtue, or moral principles; the state of being corrupted or debased; loss of purity or integrity, depravity, weakness, impurity, bribery. Corruption has its roots in the family and grows to the larger society. In the society, corruption is found in the churches, mosques, schools, offices even at the government houses i.e. federal, state and local government. Today, we have the following forms of corruption. Personnel corruption. Judicial corruption. Executive corruption. Legislative corruption. Academic corruption. Economic corruption. It should be noted that corruption takes place when a person or group of persons use power and resources at his/her disposal to attain illegal gains, whether individually or corporately.   CAUSES OF CORRUPTION Greediness: Many of our political lords are corrupted, they embezzled huge amounts of money despite the fact that they are well paid. Many of them involve in money laundering. They have investments abroad in order to have enough money to re-contest for the same position they already occupy. Poverty: The state of being poor can lead someone to involve in corruption e.g. graduates who are not employed, many of them involve in examination malpractice, they register candidates for ordinary level examination and ensure they succeed by all means during the examination. This is called academic corruption. Wickedness: This is in form of cheating others, some even deny others their benefits. Westernisation: This is the process of assimilation by a society of the customs and practices of western culture. This has influenced our society greatly in that our values and traditions have been eroded. e.g. it is the belief of the Yorubas that anybody who steals will be killed by the god of iron but today people keep no longer our culture and tradition. Material acquisition: Today people rejoice and boast of the property they have i.e. amount of wealth they possess and this has led some other people to involve in corruption. They want to be like others who had already acquired enough property. Some youths today travel to countries like U.S.A. to acquire more and return to Nigeria for enjoyment, many of them did not return in peace some were arrested, detained and jailed.   POVERTY The quality or state of being poor or indigent; want or scarcity of means of subsistence, indigence, need. Poverty in a simple form, is to not be financially able to cater for ones needs or not be able to provide for the basic needs such as food, shelter, clothing, etc. In…

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COMMON CRIMES AND SECURITY MANAGEMENT

COMMON CRIMES The common crimes in our society are those that we are familiar with owning to their prevalence in our country. It should be noted that common crimes are problems that give the national leaders serious concern. The federal government who has sole constitutional duty on defence, has put in place various bodies to ensure a crime-free society. Upon the concerted efforts of these bodies, we still hear and see the following crimes in our society. They are as follows: Fraud. Murder. Rape. Theft. False witness. Distribution and sales of fake drugs. Sales of contaminated food. Armed robbery. Certificate forgery. Kidnapping. Impersonation. Human trafficking. Examination malpractice. Vandalization of public property.   1) Fraud: Longman Active Study Dictionary (5th Edition) defines fraud as the crime of deceiving people in order to get money. This is common in our society today. Some people in secondary schools love to deceive prospective candidate(s) for West African Examination or National Examination Council, defraud candidate(s) by collecting money and refusing to register such candidate(s) for the said examination. Some people do that at higher institution promising to offer admission for people still they collect money and run away. It is not limited to that place alone, some do defraud people in business and disappear into thin air.   2) Murder: Section 316 of the criminal code defines murder as: A person who unlawfully kills another under any of the following circumstances, that is to say: If the offender intends to cause the death of the person killed, or that of some other person; If the offender intends to do to the person killed or to some other person grievous harm; If death is caused by means of an act done in the prosecution of an unlawful purpose, which act is of such a nature as to be likely to endanger human life. If the offender intends to do grievous harm to some person for the purpose of facilitating the commission of an offence which is such that the offender may be arrested without warrant, or for the purpose of facilitating the flight of an offender who has committed or attempted to commit any such offence; If death is caused by administering any stupefying or overpowering things for either of the purpose last aforesaid. If death is caused by wilfully stopping the breath of any person for either of such purposes is guilty of murder. In the second case it is immaterial that the offender did not intend to hurt the particular person who is killed. In the third case, it is immaterial that the offender did not intend to hurt any person. In the thrice last cases it is immaterial that the offender did not intend to cause death or did not know that death was likely to result.   3) Rape: Section 357 of Nigeria criminal code states that any person who has unlawful carnal knowledge of a woman or girl, without her consent, or with her consent, if the consent is obtained by force or by means of threats or intimidation of any kind, or by fear or harm, or by means of false and fraudulent representation as to the nature of the act, or, in the case of a married woman, by impersonating her husband, is guilty of an offence which is called rape. This type of crime is common today most especially among youths and old people to children. We have heard about a man of seventy who raped a four year old girl.   4) Theft/ Stealing: Section 383 of criminal code says a person who fraudulently takes anything capable of being stolen or fraudulently converts to his own use or to the use of any other person anything capable of being stolen, is said to steal that thing. In a simple form, stealing is to take or convert another person’s property or thing to oneself. Act of theft is stealing government property or that of another person. It is common in our society.   5) False witness: This is to lie against somebody or making untrue statements about a particular person in order to support somebody and against the person he/she opposes.   6) Distribution and Sale of Fake Drugs: So many people do commit this type of crime; they distribute to market adulterated drugs, they are evil doers i.e. to people in the society which cause havoc in life of people.   7) Sales of Contaminated Food: Some people sell to the public food items that are not good and beneficiary to the human body. Some are contaminated with germs yet they still sell them. Examples are milk, beverages, sachet water, alcohol, etc. Many of our pure water are unsafe due to particles we find inside the sachet.   8) Armed Robbery: Section 401 states that any person who steals anything, and at or immediately before or immediately after the time of stealing it, uses or threatens to use actual violence to any person or property in order to obtain or retain the thing stolen or to prevent or overcome resistance to its being stolen or retained, is said to be guilty of robbery. This type of crime is common today, it happens in the banks, shops, they normally steal huge amounts of money. Armed robbers are professional thieves. They rob with deadly weapons like AK47 gun, axe, cutlass etc.   9) Certification forgery: This is to make fake copies of certificate in any form in order to deceive people. The owner of the fake certificate claims that he/she has completed a course of study and passed prescribed examinations which qualify him/her to be a holder of the certificate. There are many people like that today in our society; it is common among the politicians.   10) Kidnapping: Section 364 of the criminal code has a broad view about this crime called kidnapping. It is a crime of taking or carrying somebody away illegally as a prisoner in order to demand for money as a ransom before the person can be released. It is now rampant and occurs to politicians or business gurus.   11) Impersonation: Today, we have fake police officers standing on highways, fake customs officers, fake pastors even fake soldiers. Impersonating is to pretend to be some-body else so as to deceive people.   12) Human trafficking: This is trading in persons and it is illegal. It covers recruiting of people which is the first step, transporting, harbouring and later received by the buyer who will use them for hard labour. Slaves or as sex workers.   13) Examination malpractice: This crime is common at all levels of education. None is exempted. It is an act of disobeying the set rules and regulations that are meant to guide the conduct of an examination.   14) Vandalization of public property: This is an act of wickedness by people; they deliberately destroy public property such as electrical installations, petroleum product pipelines, government bill boards, school building, etc. It happens mostly in the south-south of Nigeria.   CAUSES OF COMMON CRIMES Joblessness: When people are not gainfully employed, it shows that they will not have any means of livelihood, such people will have nothing to do than perpetrate evil in the society. Poverty: Poverty is an agent of crime, when people are poor and cannot meet with some basic needs of life, they will engage in crime. Laziness: Most of our youths nowadays are lazy, they are not ready to engage in Agricultural works, they are just looking for quick means of making money. They are ready to make money anyhow and anyway. Breach of our social values and ethics: Youths and few elders that perpetrate evil in our society disrespect and make mockery of our social values and ethics, societal values of hard work, honesty, sincerity are no longer honoured rather they breach them. They resort to crime. Lack of adequate restriction of arms and ammunition: Anybody today in Nigeria can buy arms and ammunition; with this evil act increase every day as there is no adequate restriction from government. Government gives license for people just because they apply for guns in order to protect themselves, it should be done thoroughly. Drug abuse: This can disable minds of a drug addict and turn him/her to perpetrate evil/crimes. Lack of adequate penalties against criminals: We have heard in the country somebody who stole government money or caught for money laundering and was made to pay a small fine for his action. This will spur others to do the same. Loose border: Our country’s borders are so porous to an extent that some miscreants enter into our country; they commit crimes and influence few others to do the same in our country.   EFFECTS OF COMMON CRIMES These are the effects of common crimes in our society, they are as follows: Politically backward: it brings about political backwardness or political underdevelopment. Such political experience will base on thuggery, electoral malpractice, etc. Economic problem: The economy of such nation will be characterized with corruption and all sorts of evil they will not allow economic development. Poor health and healthcare services: In a nation where sales of fake drugs and poor food services are dominant, people will experience negative drug reaction. Breakdown of value system: Our value system & cultural heritage will be bastardized in nation where crimes dominate. Insecurity of life and property: There will be killings, disrespect of human dignity, phobia, both private and public nuisance in a nation where crimes dominate. Loss of life and property will also not be lacking. Bad image among comity of nations: A nation that is known and noted for crimes will have bad image among other nations of the world. The first thing that must come to our mind is that security agents are human being like other people in the society. They are our friend; they are to ensure our safety. It is clearly written on police bill boards that the police is our friend. So you can relate with any security agent as you relate with your friend in school or elsewhere. But, we must be humble in addressing security agents. Secondly, try to establish a good relationship with security agents by becoming a good citizen and supply information that will help any security agent in the discharge of their duties. You must ensure that your information is correct and genuine. Thirdly, get their numbers, call them from time to time and present your speech in a polite manner.   CRIME PREVENTION Crime prevention is all about how to hinder or mitigate crimes in our society. No wonder the government of Nigeria has set up various law enforcement agencies to prevent crimes and to curb crimes when they are being committed. All the law enforcement agencies are duty bound to prevent criminal activities in our nations. They work hand in hand to ensure a crimes-free society. Similarly, every citizen should discourage crime in our society. Everybody i.e. old and young must have adequate knowledge of the law. Our youths/wards must be well trained at home. Every child must maintain good name and character and avoid criminal behaviour. Everybody must supply correct and genuine information to security agencies, school or neighbourhood authorities. Good advice must be given to age mates who have criminal tendencies to stop the ill behaviour. All these stated above are steps to follow in avoiding criminal behaviour.

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THE CONSTITUTION

A constitution is a body of fundamental principles, established precedents, conventions, rules and regulations according to which a state or other organization is governed. “Constitution is the collection of principles according to which the powers of government, the rights of the governed and the relation between the two are adjusted” – Woolsey “Constitution of a state is that body of rules or laws, written or unwritten which determines the organization of government, the distribution of powers to the various organs of government and the general principles on which these powers are to be exercised” – Gilchrist   Importance of Constitution Each state has a constitution which lays down the organization, powers and functions of the government of the state. The government always works according to the constitution – It is the supreme law and all government institution and members are bound by it. Constitution enjoys supreme importance in the state because: It reflects the sovereign will of the people It lays down the aims, objectives, values and goals which the people want to secure. It contains description and guarantee of the fundamental rights of the people. It gives detailed account of the organization of the government. The organization, powers and functions of its other organs and their inter-relationship. In a federation, the constitution lays down the division of powers between the central government and the governments of the federating states/provinces. It specifies the power and method of amendment of the constitution. It lays down the election system and political rights of the people. It provides for independence of the judiciary and rule of law. The constitution governs all and no one can violate its rules. Every democratic constitution guarantees to the citizens a protection against arbitrary governmental actions.   SOURCES OF CONSTITUTION 1) Written Document Most modern constitutions derive their origin from the laws already written down via a constituent assembly. Hence a written constitution refers to a formal document in which the fundamental laws, conventions, rules and regulations which govern a country are written in the form of a book. It embodies the constitution of the state. It enjoys the place of supremacy. The government is strictly bound by its provisions and works strictly in accordance with its provisions. Examples of countries with written constitution are Nigeria, USA, Germany, Japan, Canada, France, Ghana, India, Switzerland and several other states.   Merits of Written Constitution It comes in handy for reference purpose. Citizens are better aware of their rights when it is written down. Due to the general awareness of its provisions by the citizens, it helps to ensure political stability. Areas of potential conflicts among organs of government are minimised because a written constitution spells out their functions. It reduces the dictatorial tendencies of our leaders because they are aware that the citizens have access to the constitution.   Demerits of Written Constitution It is subject to frequent court cases leading to loss of valuable time and energy. It is difficult to change as necessary because of its rigid nature. It does not cover all subjects hence its comprehensiveness is limited. It is not easily adaptable to changing conditions and time.   2) Unwritten Document This is one in which the fundamental laws, conventions, principles, customs, norms, rules and regulations which govern a country are not written down in any single document. However, an unwritten constitution is not totally unwritten. Some of its parts are available in written forms but these do not stand codified in the form of a legal document or a code or a book. According to Garner, “an unwritten constitution is one in which most and not all, rules are unwritten and these are not found in any one charter or document”. A good example is the constitution of the United Kingdom. All unwritten constitutions are flexible and mostly associated with unitary governments.   Merits of an Unwritten Constitution It is flexible hence it is easy to amend Many potential areas of dispute are eliminated because it is flexible. It is responsive to changing situations because it evolves with time. It is easy to interpret thus reducing incidents of litigation.   Demerits of an Unwritten Constitution Since it is easy to amend, government may be tempted to amend it, for flimsy reasons. It is not easy to prove that a written document has been violated since it is not found in a single document. It is difficult for citizens to become aware of all their rights and duties when the constitution is unwritten.   3) Judicial Pronouncements The Supreme Court is vested with the responsibility of interpreting the laws and also to put life into the basic document to enable it to keep pace with the time. Thus, such judicial decisions act as a source of the constitution. It includes court judgements passed on very important subjects. These are called case laws, and it could also be from superior courts.

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