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Exploring the Impact of Institutions on the Success of Democracy

Jun 5, 2023 | 0 comments

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Jun 5, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments

Democracy generally implies to a system of government where power lies in the hands of the majority. It is a kind of governance in which power is vested in the hands of the common citizens. Democracy marks a power that lies in the hands of ordinary citizens to elect leaders of their choice that represent them.  Since many governments have adopted democratic system of governance, democracy is accredited achievement of the 20th century. Institutions contribute to the success of democratization by presenting several advantages.

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To begin with democracy is credited for protecting the interests of the common citizens. The supreme power remains in the hands of citizens through their elected representatives. These elected representatives carry with them the political social and economic interests of the common citizens who elected them (Rakner & van de Walle, 2009).

Democracy on the other hand bases on the rule of equality. According to the laws of democracy, members of the country or the state are considered equal before the law. Each and every individual l have an equal guaranteed right to enjoy and participate on social, economic and political affairs of the nation. The state or any other authority is not allowed to discriminate along sex, gender or racial lines (Rakner & van de Walle, 2009).

Democracy is recommended for its governance is based on dedication and responsibility .under democratic governance, people discuss issues thoroughly in order to reach concrete agreements that would yield the ultimate benefit for the larger public population

Democracy on the other hand promotes change in the government without violence. This provides citizens with an ideal sense of participation. Despite the advantages enjoyed by democracy, democratic governments have with them various shortcomings. Democracy is prone to wastage of resources and time (Brysk, 2000). A lot of time is spent in taking public accounts on issues that affect governance .on the other hand, huge sums of money are spent in election procedures while huge  risks lies on the possibility of being ruled by irresponsible leaders wo are very likely to embezzle public funds (Rakner & van de Walle, 2009).

There is high possibility of making wrong choices in selection of leaders. Not all individuals in democratic nation understand social, political and economic needs of their societies. May be because of their popularity, the public are likely to make wrong choices in electing logical leaders who understand their needs. Lastly on the disadvantages, democracy gives emphasis on quantity rather than quality (Rakner & van de Walle, 2009).

Although legislatures are essentially creations of democracy, legislature has a major role as an institution in either promoting or hindering democracy. The legislature plays a significant role in the life of a democratic nation. Legislation can be defined as the process of making the laws by an authorized body. Legislation is responsible for promoting democracy through its acts. The acts of the legislature that create laws protecting human rights and limiting powers that might lead to exploitation of the citizens. The representative election into the legislative assembly is an obvious strategy of promoting democracy. On the other hand, having a powerful legislature that oversights the use of national resources and ensuring equitable distribution of resources I an effective way through which the legislature promotes democracy

On the other hand however, legislature may hinder the development of proper democracy. Through creation of selfish laws and act that serve interests of particular group of people, the legislature automatically and directly hinders democracy (Brysk, 2000).

Party system affects the quality of democracy in various ways. Democracy exist and grows in   a non-institutionalized party systems. Multi-party system yield the highest quality of democracy. Multi-party system refers to the government system where multiple political parties have the capability to be in control of government and government offices either in coalition or individually. The parties have the ability to hold government offices due to stiff competition among themselves. Multi-party system provides the opportunities for those dissatisfied by the functionality of the current government to criticize the government and challenge the government in holding the office.  Various parties oversight the functions of the governments and provide opportunity for citizens to choose the best party that they feel present their interests  and common good .on the other hand single party system is a threat to democracy. The single-party system does not give citizens opportunity to choose the kind of party that presents their concerns. Single-party system vests political monopoly on one party and limits competition thus hindering the democratic rights of citizens (Brysk, 2000).

The electoral system on the other hand tell more about democracy. Voting for example has been applied as a democratic feature in politic since 4th century. A democratic electoral system gives votes equal value and gives citizens opportunity to choose leaders of their choice whom they feel hold ad cherish their interests. Democratic electoral system takes into consideration the interest of the minority groups with high level of participation. On the other hand, an electoral system that do not give every individual opportunity to participate in electing their leaders hinders democracy (Howard, 2002).

Political parties play significant role in improving democracy. With different policies various political parties give opportunities to identify with the parties that present their interests. On the other hand, the political parties provide an arena through which the citizens can raise their concerns. Different political parties provide oversight to the government and ensure that the government is on toes in protecting people’s rights and ensuring that the needs of citizens are logically attended to by the state. However, political parties may be very disastrous and can hinder democracy if they are aligned along ethnic, racial or cultural lines (Howard, 2002).

Social and civil movements on the other hand promote democracy. They provide oversight to the government and put the operating government on check. Social and civil movements on the other hand provide an arena through which people can air their views especially those concerning g the government


Brysk, A. (2000). “Democratizing civil society in Latin America.” Journal of Democracy 11 (3), 151-165.

Howard, M. (2002). “The weakness of post-communist civil society.” Journal of Democracy 13 (1), 157-169.

Rakner, L. & van de Walle. (2009). “Opposition weakness in Africa.”  Journal of Democracy 20 (3), 108-121

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