Advantages of democracy over military rule in Nigeria
Eventually, people will always talk about the advantages of democracy over military rule in Nigeria. Those who had an opportunity to compare two rules will vote for democracy and will always appreciate peaceful and stable democracy. We will remind you in this article one more time why the whole country has to work hard to overcome the challenges of Democracy in Nigeria.
What is democracy
Today democracy is considered the best form of government in the world. In a democratic state, people are believed to have power in there hands, and people decide how to rule the country.
The characteristics of democracy are:
- People are the highest form of political power; they have a right to choose and to be chosen.
- Mass media and citizens have a right to express themselves; people can even organize meetings.
- The law protects the rights of the citizens.
- The rule of law prevails.
- The separation of powers into executive, legislature and judicial branches.
- Pure democracy does not exist.
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You must be surprised by the last line, but this is indeed the problem of democracy, it does not exist. There are always exceptions that do not permit people to rule the country entirely. At the same time, these restrictions do not let the democracy to become the anarchy. Anyway, to see all advantages of the regime that is supposed to be called “democracy,” we will compare it with the other governing experienced by the Nigerians – military rule.
What is military rule
Military rule - is political regime when the power is concentrated in the hands of the military as an organization. It is believed to be one of the types of the authoritarian regime because at the time of military rule human rights are noticeably limited.
The main features of military rule are:
- The concentration of power in the hands of the military ruler.
- A significant limitation or complete absence of democratic rights and freedoms.
- Willful violation of constitutional proclamation of rights and freedoms in the pretext of restoring and maintaining order in the country.
- The military government can resort to weapons for resolving any conflict. People lose any right to express their opinion and have to suffer under the pressure of armed people.
However, military rule has positive sights:
- The rulers have no other choice but maintain and sponsor some projects, the civilian government forgets about in peaceful times.
- The military rule includes severe discipline, that factually “destroys” corruption and bureaucracy.
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What are the advantages of democracy over military rule in relation to human rights
We are going to speak about democracy and the army rule in the context of Nigeria because this country experienced both regimes.
Military rule in Nigeria started for the first time in 1966 – a several years after obtaining the independence. The matter was that Nigeria was in an infantile state, and it was necessary to adjust the governing so that all citizens were satisfied.
There were several coup d’états against the existing government of the grounds of ethnicity, discontentment and many other reasons. It is quite clear that military rule was not the best period in the life of Nigerian people. But citizens of the current time must be able to compare these two forms of ruling to avoid choosing the wrong ways in the future.
First of all, it is necessary to highlight the advantages of democracy over military rule in Nigeria concerning human rights.
1. The right to vote
The military rule usually begins with the armed seizure of the governing power.
2. The right to express one’s point of view
Military rule press is characterized by propaganda. All mass media (including radio, television, Internet) work for the government only. People can not organize demonstrations and meetings because they will be punished. During the military rule, many people were tortured because of their opposition to the government. Democracy predisposes the freedom of speech and pluralism of opinions. Meetings organized by people will be taken into account, and people will be listened to because the government depends on people.
3. The right to live
In the period of the military rule in Nigeria, many people were killed and tortured. They were not protected by the law or police. In the democratic conditions, all citizens are supposed to be protected by the law, and all people are supposed to be equal in the court.
READ ALSO: History of democracy in Nigeria from 1960
Advantages of democracy over military rule in general
Other advantages of democracy over military rule in Nigeria include:
- Democracy is the best way to implement the social and political system in a society with constantly changing living conditions without revolutionary explosions and upheavals.
- Democracy is stable. People appreciate peace that is why the regime that presupposes no peace provokes mass dissatisfaction. The problem of Nigerian military rule consists in its durability. It took thirty-three years for the state to become democratic! That is why it is still so difficult to recover from the consequences of revolutions, blood spilling, and instability.
- Democracy promotes the idea of national identity, of national pride, while military rule destroys it. Many people tend to leave the country with military rule.
- Government is stable in a democratic state. Unlike the military rule, you will never wake up and hear the name of a new ruler of the country. Democracy brings stability. At least, in the democratic state, you will go to bed thinking that tomorrow will be a different day!
As it can be seen, military rule is evil, like any other authoritarian rule. This is not just someone’s subjective point of view. Summing up the advantages of democratic rule over military rule is human life which is the most precious thing in the world and any rule that threats or neglects it is considered wrong, dangerous, and must be demolished. Fortunately, it happened in Nigeria, and under no conditions should it (military rule) be repeated.
READ ALSO: Advantages and disadvantages of democracy