MEANING OF GOVERNMENT
Government can be defined as the system by which a state or community is controlled. Government can also be seen as an agency established by the political community to promote the general welfare of the people.
ARMS OF GOVERNMENT
Government has three main institutions that assist it to carry out its responsibilities. These institutions are called arms, organs or branches of government. The 3 Arms of Government are: The executive, The legislature and The judiciary. The legislature makes law, the executive implements the law while the judiciary interprets the law.
GOVERNMENT AS A PROCESS OF GOVERNING
Government is seen as a process of administering a given state. This is because the activities of a given government involve a clear procedure specifically laid down in the constitution of a state.
GOVERNMENT AS AN ACADEMIC FIELD OF STUDY
Government includes the study of political institutions in the state, including the ideas, values and doctrines about politics.
BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT
An advanced study of Government is known as Political Science. Political science is divided into 5 branches.
- Political Theory: This aspect of government deals with ideas, thoughts and imagination of great thinkers about the state. Examples of such great thinkers include: Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Karl Max, etc.
- Political Institutions: This deals with institutions like the legislature, executive and judiciary.
- Comparative Government: It compares and contrasts different political systems, political institutions and structures among various states.
- Public Administration: This deals with the various ways in which man and materials are mobilised in order to achieve societal goals.
- International Relations: It focuses on the foreign policies of different states. It also deals with international organisations such as the Organisation of African Unity (O.A.U), United Nations (U.N), etc.
FEATURES OF GOVERNMENT
- Power: This is the ability to command others to behave in a certain way or take a particular course of action irrespective of their wishes.
- Law: This refers to a body of rules that regulates the conduct of the people.
- Revenue: Imposition and collection of taxes, royalties, etc. helps to generate funds for the government.
- Personnel: This refers to the able bodied men and women who assist government to implement policies.
- Public Support: It confers legitimacy on government and it gives it authority to rule.
- Provision of Social Amenities: The responsibility of the government is to provide for the welfare of the people, e.g. security, pipe borne water, road, schools, electricity, etc.
FUNCTIONS OF GOVERNMENT
1. Maintaining social peace is a major fundamental purpose of the government. Government maintains law and order through the activities of law enforcement agencies like the police, army, etc.
2. It defends its people against internal and external attacks.
3. It manages economy condition through its monetary and fiscal policies.
4. It fosters a sense of belonging and unity in a state.
5. Government works to make and distribute income and resources
6. It settles disputes between individuals, groups and institutions through various courts.
7. Government provides social and infrastructural facilities for the people.
IMPORTANCE OF GOVERNMENT
Below are some of the importance of government.
- Government gives political education and equips the citizens with thoughtful mind.
- The knowledge of the constitution can enable an individual to defend his freedom.
- Government widens the political horizons of students.
- The knowledge about powers and limitations of office holders can prevent the emergence of a dictator.
- It gives leadership training to the students.
- Government equips students to become an effective politician, political adviser, etc.
- Government enables us to know our political environment and how the task of government is carried out.
If you found this site and its content useful and relevant to you, support and help us keep the site running so we can continue to give you solid educational updates. Click here to donate now thanks.