Political participation is defined as the process whereby individuals get themselves involved in the political activities and in the decision-making of their country.   Forms of political participation Individual’s political participation may take the following forms: Voting in elections: This is one of the ways of political participation and it gives the individual the opportunity to vote for candidates of his choice. Holding of public offices: The holding of public office allows the individual to contribute immensely in the areas of decision making and in other crucial issues of national importance. Contesting elections: When an individual stands as a candidate on the platform of his party for an elective post,…



    Representative government, also known as Indirect democracy, is defined as a government of elected representatives of the people. Those elected, through organised elections, rule on behalf of the people and with every assurance that their interests will be enhanced and protected. The system is based on accountability and responsibility of the political leaders. Elections into different positions in government are conducted periodically.   Features of Representative Government Free and fair elections: In every representative government, elections are conducted free and fair, devoid of any electoral malpractices. Periodic elections: Elections are conducted periodically. In some political systems, it could be every four or five years. Independent electoral commission: This body in…



    The theory of checks and balances emphasises the power of any of the organs checking the activities of the others. For example the ability of the executive, legislature or judiciary, checking the activities of one another. It enhances fair play, balance of power and it removes the tendency of misuse of power by any of the organs. The principle of checks and balances is seen as one of the arguments in favour of separation of powers.   Merits of Checks and Balances Excessive use of power: It prevents excessive use of power by any of the organs. Orderliness and efficiency: It makes for orderliness and efficiency in the exercise of…



    It is defined as the separation or division of political powers and functions among the three arms of government – the executive, legislature and judiciary. Each body should be constituted and be involved only in the administration of that department. For example, the executive should be solely involved in policy making and implementation. Liberal writers believe that power is dangerous and argue that it is normally bad for men to enjoy an excessive amount of it. Lord Acton declared in one of his writings that ?power corrupts, but absolute power corrupts absolutely’. Montesquieu, in his book, The Spirit of Laws, argued that if the legislature and executive. powers are in…



    Constitutionalism is based on the belief that the powers of the various organs of government should be defined and regulated by the constitution, so that those who govern the society do so without denying or violating human dignity. This shows that limitations are placed in the performance of their functions and must be in accordance with the provisions of the constitution. Also, constitutionalism checks and sets limits, not only to the actions of government, but also to the actions of the people making up the political system.   Purposes of Constitutionalism Fundamental human rights: The principle of constitutionalism enhances the protection of the people’s fundamental human rights, for example rights…

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