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  1. Electoral Process | Week 1
    5 Topics
    1 Quiz
  2. Types of Electoral Process | Week 2
    5 Topics
    1 Quiz
  3. Electoral Process Continues - Proportional, Representation, Repeated Ballot, Direct and Indirect Elections | Week 3
    5 Topics
    1 Quiz
  4. Ballot Systems | Types of Voting | Week 4
    3 Topics
    1 Quiz
  5. Organization of Election | Week 5
    4 Topics
    1 Quiz
  6. Electoral Commission and Electoral Officers | Week 6
    4 Topics
    1 Quiz
  7. Public Opinion and Mass Media | Week 7
    6 Topics
    1 Quiz
  8. Civil Service | Week 8
    6 Topics
  9. Personnel Administration in the Civil Service | Week 9
    5 Topics
    1 Quiz
  10. Public Corporation | Week 10
    9 Topics
  11. Commercialization, Privatization and Deregulation of Public Corporations | Week 11
    4 Topics
    1 Quiz

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Topic Content:

  • Theory Questions & Answers – Electoral Process Continues

Evaluation Questions – Electoral Process Continues:

1. Write short notes on the following: (a) Electoral System (b) Referendum (c) Plebiscite

2. What is proportional representation? (b) Discuss merits and demerits of proportional representation.

3. What is simple majority system? (b) List merits and demerits of simple majority system.

4. Explain second Ballot. (b) Give merits and demerits of second Ballot.

5. Give merits and demerits of repeated voting.

6. Explain direct election. (b) What are merits and demerits of direct election?

7. What is Indirect Election? (b) Explain merits and demerits of Indirect Election.


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Evaluation Questions – Electoral Process Continues

1. Write short notes on the following:

(a) Electoral System

Answer: Electoral system is the method or process through which people of a state elect representatives into the government or political post.

(b) Referendum

Answer: A referendum is a type of election where people vote on public policy or an important political issue or question e.g. a proposed constitutional change.

(c) Plebiscite

Answer: Plebiscite is a type of direct voting in a state in which the people vote to agree or disagree with a given policy or question of public importance e.g. a proposed constitutional change, boundary dispute, etc.


2. What is proportional representation?

Answer: Proportional representation is a system of allocating seats in the legislature to political parties in proportion to the total number of votes the party received.

Proportional representation is divided into two: List Proportional Representation and the Single Transferable Vote.

List Proportional Representation: This type is usually used in multi-member constituencies where voters rank their vote in their order of preference for the parties which have registered a list of candidates. There are two types of this list proportional representation.

The Free List: Voters have the choice of ranking the candidates.

The Bound List: Voters are limited to the choice of the party list.

The Single Transferable Vote: This type can also be used in order of preference on the ballot paper. In calculating the winners, after the total number of first preferences, votes are added up and the counting begins by establishing the percentage quota of votes required for one seat. It is calculated by the number of votes cast divided by the number of seats to be filled. Any candidate that gets that number of votes is assured of securing a seat. Using either of these formulas:

Hare’s Quota = \( \frac{Total \: Votes}{Total \: Seats} \)

Droop’s Quota = \( \frac{Total \: Votes \: + \: 1}{Total \: Votes \: + \: 1} \)


(b) Discuss the merits and demerits of proportional representation.


Merits of Proportional Representation

  • Political parties are represented in the legislature according to their electoral strength.
  • This system encourages political participation as sections are represented in the legislature.
  • It prevents over-representation of the majority groups and non-representation or under-representation of the minority group.
  • In this system, every vote counts. No vote is wasted as excess votes of the winner are allotted to other party candidates.

Demerits of Proportional Representation

  • It involves a lot of calculation which makes it cumbersome, complex, and difficult.
  • It is difficult to use in an illiterate society.
  • It encourages the growth of many political parties, even parties that have very small voter supporters.
  • It can lead to the formulation of a coalition/National government because a single political party may not have majority seats in the legislature.


3. What is a simple majority system?

Answer: Simple Majority System is a system that allows a candidate that scored the highest number of votes among the candidates in an election to be declared the winner. The winner need not score the majority vote.


(b) List the merits and demerits of a simple majority system.


Merits of Simple Majority

  • It is a simple and easy method of deciding a winner. It does not require many calculations to get the winner.
  • It is cheap in terms of cost, time, and energy as the winner emerges at the end of the first voting.
  • Election results come out almost immediately after the end of voting.
  • It promotes political stability in the parliament as one party may win the majority of seats in the parliament.

Demerits of Simple Majority System

  • Election results sometimes work against the wishes of the majority of voters. The result of a few voters determines the winner.
  • The system discourages the existence of small political parties as the chances of the small political parties winning elections are slim.
  • It gives the wrong impression about the popularity and legitimacy of the winner.
  • The system overemphasizes party organization and plays down on the quality of the candidate.
  • This system promotes ethnicity in National politics.


4. Explain Second Ballot. 

Answer: Second ballot is an electoral system in which the two candidates that secured the highest number of votes (in the first round of voting) are made to face one another in another balloting (Second Ballot) at a later date, the candidate with the highest number of votes will be declared the winner.


(b) Give merits and demerits of Second Ballot.


Merits of Second Ballot

  • It eliminates the exhaustion of voters and political apathy through series/repeated voting.
  • A winner that emerges enjoys the support of the majority
  • A smaller political party can secure seats in the parliament based on their popularity.
  • It ensures that all votes count in determining a winner as the votes of the losers are switched to the two last candidates in the second ballot.
  • It gives the electorate and political parties room to participate in government through elections.

Demerits of Second Ballot

  • Second ballot is expensive.
  • It is time-consuming.
  • Election results may be delayed.
  • It can encourage election malpractice and manoeuvring.
  • It can result in political apathy.


5. Give merits and demerits of repeated voting.


Merits of Repeated Voting/Ballot

  • The winner enjoys the support of the majority.
  • The best hands qualify as candidates.
  • It prevents deadlocks at the end of elections.
  • Candidates are voted based on their own merit, not on party organization.

Demerits of Repeated Voting/Ballot

  • It is expensive in terms of time and funds.
  • The system is exhaustive.
  • There will be a delay in releasing the election results due to a series of voting involved before a winner emerges.
  • Some votes may develop apathy for politics due to repeated voting.


6. Explain direct election.

Answer: Direct election allows the electorate to cast their votes to fill vacant positions in public office. The registered voters directly elect political office holders, not through intermediaries.


(b) What are the merits and demerits of direct election?

Merits of Direct Election

  • It is democratic as electorates elect candidates of their choice.
  • It promotes popular sovereignty.
  • It promotes political participation as many people will be involved in the voting process.
  • It promotes political equality among the voters “Mr. ‘A’s votes are equal to “Mr. ‘B’s vote. All votes carry the same right.

Demerits of Direct Election

  • It is expensive to conduct direct elections. A lot of funds and personnel are needed to conduct direct elections.
  • In an illiterate society, direct election may not work as many voters may vote blindly due to ignorance.
  • It can be time-consuming and cumbersome due to the large number of votes involved.
  • Elections may result in conflict, thuggery, and intimidation of opponents.


7. What is Indirect Election?

Answer: Indirect election is the type of election where the voters do not elect their leaders rather the electorate elects people (delegates) who then elect their leaders. The voters vote for a pool of delegates or the electoral college who will vote for the candidates. It is practised in the United States of America and Germany. The voters relinquish their voting rights to a selected representative (previously chosen in an election) to elect the political leaders on behalf of the people.


(b) Explain the merits and demerits of Indirect Election.


Merits of Indirect Election

  • It promotes informed electors to vote on behalf of the ignorant majority. The delegates are knowledgeable and better informed.
  • It reduces the tension, things, and indecencies associated with elections e.g. riots, snatching ballot boxes, arson, etc.
  • It is cost-effective.
  • It reduces triggering tendencies.

Demerits of Indirect Election

  • Indirect voting is undemocratic: Many qualified voters may not be allowed to vote.
  • There may be a defective representation by the delegates.
  • It discourages mass political participation.
  • It is time-consuming as the election comes in two stages.
  • The candidates can easily buy their way to position as elections are fewer in number.

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