THE THEORY OF CHECKS AND BALANCES , MERITS AND DEMERITS.

The last that we came to this class we talked about separation of power , but today we shall be looking at it’s modifier called the theory of checks and balances. In government we say that separation of power, modifies checks and balances , the same way adverb modifies a verb in English language.
What is checks and balances? Someone might want to answer it from its literal meaning , but I will quickly give you it’s contextual meaning with an illustrations to ensure proper comprehension.

Checks and balances may be defined as the use of one organ or arm of government to checkmate the activities of the other in other to ensure fair play and avoid what we called misuse of power .
For better understanding, I will Nigeria as a case study and give you a better illustration of how it’s been applied in Nigeria our country.
When the legislature passes a law, the executive will have to assent to it before it becomes a law , this is to avoid the legislature implementing laws that will only be in their favor. Likewise, when the executive appoints a minister , he or she must be screened by the legislature and so on.

Having said that, this theory helps to ensure that no organs acts solely on it’s own.everyone of them has what is also known as oversight functions.

THE NEED FOR CHECKS AND BALANCES IN A DEMOCRATIC DISPENSATION.

Over the years, many scholars has argued that checks and balances has helped shaped our modem democracy in a better position. Especially in areas of .
1. Orderliness and efficiency, this theory helps the above aforementioned organs discharge their various duties orderly and efficiently for the smooth running of the day to day affairs of the country or state .
2.protection of fundamental human rights. This right is the unrestrained right of an individual , which is been protected by the judiciary as the hope of common man.
3.it’s entrenched in the Constitution, to be entrenched in the constitution means that it has constitutional backing.
Lastly, it prevents what is called dictatorship, in others words , ruling without due process.
So, from the above , you will see that checks and balances modifies separation of power.

ARGUMENT AGAINST CHECKS AND BALANCES. we all knows that whatever that has cons also has prons ,that is economics terms. it implies that it has weaknesses which are factors affecting its smooth implementation.
Such as interference , this interference arises when one organ carries out its oversight function.
Secondly is the issue of veto power been exercised by the executive arm .and a host of others , you can read more on that .
Thanks for been a wonderful student.

17 thoughts on “THE THEORY OF CHECKS AND BALANCES , MERITS AND DEMERITS.

  1. Well, in a country like ours, the concept of check and balance has been sabotaged.

    Judges are taking bribes.
    Senators are embezzling.

    Where do we go from here

  2. Most of the things I learnt in secondary school, were theories , I thought its applicable in real life, but it was now that I learnt some of them only exist on paper in Nigerian context.

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