2 constitutionalism lecture

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  • 1. CONSTITUTIONALISM
  • 2. What you will revise? definition Aspect & characteristics LECTURE TWO
  • 3. Ideas and theories that put limitations on political power & of the government’s sway over citizens in particular. Basically, it is a tool to limit government’s power. define Concerned with both the framework as well as the spirit that breathes within the provisions in that framework. Number of separate but related features of a democratic political system. LECTURE TWO
  • 4. Right provisions Safeguards rights These rights operate as legal constraints upon the political process. Structural provisions include s.o.p, representa tive system, etc. ensure that government act in the interests of the public rather the selfinterested representatives.
  • 5. Control of govt power • Lord Acton – “All power tends to corrupt & absolute power corrupts absolutely”. • The government must be limited by law. • It is interrelated with the idea of ‘separation of powers’, ‘rule of law’ & ‘limited government’. LECTURE TWO
  • 6. Respect for law Citizens must accept the limits on their freedom loyalty to Constitution Officials must observe the limits on their powers Similar to the idea of rule of law
  • 7. Internalisation of values loyalty to the letter as well as the spirit of the Constitution Demands observance Sir Ivor Jennings immortal words “provide the flesh to clothe the dry bones of the law”. Requires commitment to ‘internalise’
  • 8. Respect for human rights Respect for liberty & equality A fair balance between conflicting demands of power & liberty, freedom & responsibility & the might of the state & the rights of the citizens. FC fundamental liberties (Articles 613) Guarantees for human freedom & dignity
  • 9. Controls over discretionary powers Institutional safeguards against abuse of powers Checks & balances Effective judicial control government should not itself be destructive of the values it was intended to promote
  • 10. Responsible government Accountability or answerability of the government Constitutional models & control mechanisms including constitutionalism, chec k& balance, federalism, jud icial review, elections, & SUHAKAM An obligation to explain & justify decisions made or action taken If individual rights/interests is affected, appropriate compensation should be given
  • 11. Entrenchment of constitutional values The constitution provides effective legal & political restraints upon the exercise of state power to amend or repeal laws dealing with constitutional safeguards. According to Smith, “constitutionalism is practised in a country where the government is genuinely accountable to an entity or organ distinct from itself… and where there are effective legal guarantees of civil liberties enforced by an independent judiciary…” Independent judiciary
  • 12. Free and fair elections does not guarantee that constitutionalis m is being practiced. Example: Adolf Hitler’s regime came to power through an election. Successive government in Israel have succeeded at the polls but genocidal policies against Palestinians in occupied territories. held in order to elect the government LECTURE TWO