ELECTORAL SYSTEM OR ELECTORAL PROCESS
An electoral system is also known as voting process. It is a set of rules and regulations that determine how elections and referendums are conducted. The whole system includes parties registration, voter registration, political campaign, accreditations, voting and declaration of results and dispute resolution.
TYPES OF ELECTORAL SYSTEM
The following are types of electoral system,
1. Simple majority system
2. Absolute majority system
3. Second ballot system/run-off system
4. Alternative voting system
5. Proportional representation system
6. Ballot or voting system
7. Direct and Indirect electoral systems
ELECTION PRIMARIES AND GENERAL ELECTION
Election Primary is also known as political party primary. A political party primary is a process of electing candidates who will represent the party in an election.
General Elections are elections conducted in electoral constituencies across the country to elect political parties and candidates into executive and legislative positions.
FORMS OF ELECTION PRIMARY
There are three (3) forms of primary election, direct, indirect, consensus electoral system.
DIRECT ELECTORAL SYSTEM
Direct election is a system of voting where voters directly vote the candidate that will represent them in a general election. For example, the presidential or governorship primaries of political parties in Nigeria.
Direct and indirect electoral system are both forms of primary election in Nigeria.
ADVANTAGES OF DIRECT ELECTORAL SYSTEM
1. It is democratic in nature.
2. It presents the interest of the people.
3. It allows people to choose candidates that will represent them in the general election.
4. It gives the people equal participation in politics.
5. It enables the candidates to test their popularity.
DISADVANTAGES OF DIRECT ELECTORAL SYSTEM
1. It is too expensive.
2. It is time consuming.
3. It enables vote buying and selling.
4. It leads to election malpractices.
5. It breeds political violence, thuggery, intimidation of the opponents, etc.
INDIRECT ELECTORAL SYSTEMS
Indirect election is a system of voting where voters indirectly vote people who will choose candidates that will represent them in the general election.
ADVANTAGES OF INDIRECT ELECTORAL SYSTEMS
1. It allows political experts to decide candidates that will represent them in the general election.
2. It is less expensive.
3. It discourages rigging and election malpractices.
4. It reduces election violence, tension, thuggery, intimidation of the opponent, etc.
DISADVANTAGES OF INDIRECT ELECTORAL SYSTEMS
1. It is undemocratic in nature.
2. It does not always represent the interest of the people.
3. It is leads to political instability.
4. It disconnects the majority from the process.
5. It is prone to bribery and election manipulation.
6. It is the source of political godfatherism.
7. It produces unpopular candidates.
Consensus is an electoral system where only the few powerful members decide who present them in the general election.
ADVANTAGES OF CONSENSUS
1. It is easy to operate.
2. It saves time.
3. It requires few people to decide for their party.
DISADVANTAGES OF CONSENSUS
1. It gives room to the highest bidder.
2. It never represent the interest of the people.
CONCEPTS OF ELECTIONS
1. Bye Election – It is an election to replace a Member of the Legislature occasioned by death, resignation, recall or taking up another public office or position.
2. Run-off Election – It is an election conducted when the first election fails to produce a clear winner to be returned for the position of President or Governor. That’s, 25% across the states or federation in the case of the presidential election and 25% across the LGA in the case of governorship election.
3. Inconclusive Election – It is an election where the total number of registered voters in a particular constituency is sufficient to cause a change in the outcome due to the postponement of election or cancellation of result(s). It may also arise when no candidate meets the criteria for election or threshold to be returned as winner after the initial ballot.
4. Election Observers – Election Observers are persons appointed by their respective organizations and accredited by INEC to observe the entire election process (distribution of election materials, accreditation process, voting, sorting and counting of ballots, collation of results and declaration of results) or any part thereof. There are two types of election observers i.e. Domestic and International Observers.
5. Election Monitors – Election monitors are officials of INEC deployed by the Commission to oversee the conduct of elections.
1. distinguish between general election and election primaries.
2. define the following – direct election, indirect election and electoral consensus.
3. outline two disadvantages and two disadvantages of the following – direct election, indirect election and electoral consensus.
4. write short note on the following – bye election, run off election, inconclusive election, election observers and monitors.