Government

Constitution - Types of Constitution

len Alfred Ajibola - Tue, 31st December, 2019 @ 12:48

Topics in Government

Scheme of Work for Government, SS1, First Term Scheme of Work for Government, SS1, Second Term Scheme of Work for Government, SS1, Third Term Concept, Advantages and Disadvantages of Multi-Party System Concept, Advantages and Disadvantages of Two-Party System Pressure Group: Types of Pressure Group Characteristics of Pressure Group Constitution - Types of Constitution Government - Scope of Government Government - Characteristics of Government Government - Importance of Government One-Party System explained Multi-Party System explained with its Characteristics Party System: Zero Party System Two-Party System explained with its Characteristics Democracy and Types of Democracy Democracy - Characteristics of Democracy Government - Types and Forms of Government Government - Functions of Government What is Government? Definitions of Government


Academic Questions in Government

Please check out our Test Your Knowledge page to see all Questions and Answers

Government may be defined as an agency or machinery or instrument that is established to manage the general welfare of the people that make up a country.

In the above statement, government is defined _____.

  • A. As a process

  • B. As an act of governing

  • C. As an institution of a state

  • D. As an academic field o study

  • E. As a political wheel

  • F. As a machine of movement

Which of the following statement is false regarding the constitution?

  • A. No one is above the constitution, even the president or prime minister of a country

  • B. A constitution can be written or unwritten

  • C. The constitution consists of the fundamental human rights of citizens of a nation

  • D. The constitution does not necessarily allocate power to the different arms of government

  • E. The constitution upholds the people's sovereignty

  • F. A good constitution is neither too rigid not too flexible

A form of government whereby each state that makes up a country has the power to govern itself and manage it's own resources is known as _____.

  • A. Democracy
  • B. Communism
  • C. Federalism
  • D. Meritocracy
  • E. Autocracy
  • F. Oligarchy

The following are examples of pressure group in Nigeria except _____.

  • A. End SARS

  • B. Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CDHR)

  • C. Odua Peoples Congress (OPC)

  • D. Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN)

  • E. Operation Feed the Nation (OFN)

  • H. National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS)

Which of the following is not an ethnic pressure group in Nigeria?

  • A. Bring Back our Girls (BBOG)

  • B. Afenifere

  • C. Ohanaeze Ndigbo

  • D. Middle Belt Forum (MBF)

  • E. Arewa Consultative Forum

  • F. Ijaw Youth Council (IYC)

The followings are ways to achieve gender equality except _____.

  • A. Education of the girl child

  • B. Encouraging women to go into power

  • C. Putting a stop to child marriage

  • D. Encouraging women to vote for women during elections

  • E. Empowering girls and women

  • F. Making laws that prohibits sexual harassment

The absence of government in a country or state is referred to as _____.

  • A. Chaos
  • B. Doom
  • C. Oligarchy
  • D. Autocracy
  • E. Anarchy
  • F. Meritocracy

The definition of democracy as 'Government of the people, by the people and for the people' is a concept of _____.

  • A. John F. Kennedy
  • B. Martin Luther King Jr.
  • C. Aristotle
  • D. George W. Bush
  • E. Kamala Harris
  • F. Abraham Lincoln

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Types of Constitution:

Constitution is the supreme law in a country or state and it specifies how such (nation, country or state) should be governed.

Please read on the Introduction to Constitution, Qualities and Importance of Constitution here.

The constitution can be put into various types based on the following headings:

1. A constitution can be written or unwritten.


  • Written Constitution

A written constitution will contain a document or series of document merged in the form of a book.

The written constitution is enacted by a constituent assembly and can be amended based on how the amendment process had been defined in the constitution itself.

Note: The constituent assembly that put forth the constitution will usually comprise of the legislative and executive arms of government.

Please read on the Arms of Government and their respective Functions here.

Written constitutions are codified, meaning that the constitutional document is the supreme law of the country and can only be amended or judged by a constitutional court through the judiciary.

Countries like Nigeria, United States of America and France all utilizes a written constitution.


  • Unwritten Constitution

An unwritten constitution is uncodified, meaning that its foundation and evolution is based on historical laws and concepts on the countries in which they govern.

Unwritten Constitution is not written into a book nor enacted by a constituent assembly. The people of the country know their constitution and have come to embrace it.

The United Kingdom makes use of an unwritten constitution.

Note: Some parts of an unwritten constitution are actually written in a book but such books may not be considered to be a legal document.

Please read on the Meaning of Government with it's various Definitions here

 

2. A constitution can be flexible or inflexible. (Inflexible constitution is sometimes referred to as a Rigid constitution).

The flexibility of a constitution determines the level of ease at which such constitution can be amended. For example, the constitution of Nigeria and United States of America is inflexible (or rigid) because it very difficult to make changes on it.


  • Inflexible or Rigid Constitution

To amend a rigid constitution, the legislature will first need to pass the amendment bill, usually with the approval of 2/3rd majority of its constituent members.

The people of the nation may influence the passing of the amendment bill, thus a rigid constitution is often considered to reflect the will of the people.

Please read on Democracy and its Characteristics here

Advantages of a Rigid Constitution

  1. It is stable for an administration’s continuity.
  2. It is perfect for a federation.
  3. It prevents dictatorship by any of the arms of government.
    Please read on Dictatorship as a Form of Government here.
  4. The political party in power cannot easily manipulate the constitution for their political gains.
    Please read on Multi-Party System, its Characteristics, Advantages and Disadvantages here.

Disadvantages of a Rigid Constitution

  1. It cannot keep up with a constant changing environment.
  2. Its difficulty to amend and can cause a revolt by the people.
    Please read on Pressure Groups and their Characteristics here.
  3. It may hinder developmental progress because of its difficulty in amendment.
    You can read on the Importance of Government here.

 

  • Flexible Constitution

A flexible constitution can be easily amended because it does not require complex procedures.

The British constitution is a typical example of a flexible constitution.

With a simple majority, the British parliament can make or amend the laws of the constitution.

Advantages of a Flexible Constitution

  1. It can easily be modified with regards to the present political and social environment of a nation.
  2. It is constantly developed and always up to date.
  3. It decreases the chances of revolt by the people.
    Please read on the Types of Democracy here.

Disadvantages of a Flexible Constitution:

  1. It is unstable.
  2. The frequent amendment of a constitution is not good for a federation.

 

3. The presidential, parliamentary, federal and unitary constitutions are also considered as types of constitution.


  • Presidential Constitution

In a presidential constitution the president is the head of the execute arm of government. The president is also considered as the head of all states present within a country. (That is; the president is the Head of States).

Note: The president is not a member of the judiciary, senate or house of representative.


  • Parliamentary Constitution

In a parliamentary constitution, the prime minister is the head of the executive arm of government; and the members of the legislative arm of government is accountable to him or her.

Please read on the Characteristics of Government here.


  • Federal Constitution

The federal Constitution is seen in countries like Nigeria and USA.

There is a central government and a state government. The president heads the central government while the various governors head each of their respective state within the country.

This type of constitution provides for the legislative competence under the central and state government.


  • Unitary Constitution

The unitary constitution is practiced by the United Kingdom. The nations involved are centrally governed.

At present, it appears to be shifting into the federal type of constitution because some power are gradually tilting into the hands of the other constituents’ nations of the United Kingdom, which includes Wales, Northern Island and Scotland.

 

4. Other types of constitution are the evolved and enacted constitutions.

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Alfred Ajibola is a Medical Biochemist, a passionate Academician with over 7 years of experience, a Versatile Writer, a Web Developer, a Cisco Certified Network Associate and a Cisco CyberOps Associate.


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Amazing facts in Government


NOTABLE POINTS IN Government

Dictatorship is one of the forms of Government. It can exist either as:

  1. Military Dictatorship
  2. Civilian Dictatorship

In 1966, Major General Johnson Aguiyi Ironsi became the first military Head of State in Nigeria after he overthrew a democratic and constitutional government (headed by the prime minister; Alhaji Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa)

The above instance is a military form of dictatorship.

A typical example of a civilian dictatorship is Adolf Hitler of Germany and Joseph Stalin of Russia and Georgia

You can read more on dictatorship here

A Pressure group is defined as any formal and organized body or group of people with the same interest and whose main goal is to put pressure on any governmental institution in order to influence government policies and laws to their own gain.

An example of a pressure group whose voice is often heard in Nigeria is the Academic Staff Union for Universities (ASUU).

Another instance of a pressure group in Nigeria is the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) group who pressured the Nigerian Government into taking appropriate actions towards the release of the 276 kidnapped female secondary students popularly referred to as the Chibok Girls, in Chibok, Bornu State, Nigeria.

Bring Back Our Girls - Len Academy

Note: These innocent female students were kidnapped by the so called "Boko Haram" on the night of April 14th - 15th, 2014.

The above pressure group was massive globally to an extent that even the first ladies of various foreign countries became a part of it.

The EndsSars is another pressure group in Nigeria. They forced the Nigerian government into scrapping the Special Anti-Robbery Squard (SARS) who had constantly brutalized the Nigerian youths.

If men and women enjoyed the same rights, same freedom, same opportunities, same resources and same rewards in all sectors of society, then that's gender equality.

Gender equality is the process of being fair to humans; both males and females.

Below are some ways towards achieving gender equality.

  • Education of the girl child

  • Encouraging women to go into power

  • Putting a stop to sexual harassment and child marriage

  • Women and girls empowerment

  • Putting a stop to harmful traditional practices against women

  • Stopping the violence and war

Please read more on gender equality and ways to achieve it here

Anarchy is one of the forms of government. Ironically, it is the absence of government in a society, country or state.

An instance of anarchy occurred in Somalia in 1991 after a dictator name Said Barre was overthrown. This made Somalia disintegrate into fractions with local warlords imposing their authority over their land/area.

Other forms of government includes:

  1. Oligarchy
  2. Colonialism
  3. Monarchy
  4. Communism
  5. Federalism
  6. Dictatorship
  7. Democracy
  8. Meritocracy
  9. Autocracy
  10. Aristocracy

Please read on the various forms of government here

Democracy is a form of government where the power of choosing a leader is vested on the people. It represents a government of the people, by the people and for the people.

According to Abrahim Lincoln,

Democracy means government of the people, by the people and for the people.

In democracy, the citizens have the rights to vote and be voted for. The citizens are mandated to choose their preferred candidate by voting for them through their political party. In fact, this voting process is considered as one of the civic responsibility of every citizen.

Please read on the fundamental Human Rights here.

Note: No one is above the rule of law in the democratic system. If the election outcome does not reflect the mandate of the people, a court of competent jurisdiction can nullify such election.

Democracy is practiced in countries like Nigeria, United States of America, India and South Africa.

Please read more on the Characteristics of Democracy here.