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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

Lesson 1, Topic 5
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Theory Questions – Electoral Process

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Topic Content:

  • Theory Questions & Answers – Electoral Process

Evaluation Questions – Electoral Process:

1a. What is election?

b. Why are elections conducted in a state?

2. Write short notes on:
(i) Suffrage
(ii) Limited suffrage 
(iii) Universal Adult suffrage
(iv) Franchise

3. What are the conditions of exercising voting rights in Nigeria?

4. Give the merits and demerits of universal adult suffrage.


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Evaluation Questions

1. (a) What is election?

Answer: Election is the method or process by which people vote to choose a person or group of people to hold an official position.

Purpose of Election

  • Elections are held to fill vacant seats in the government.
  • Election is the process by which the electorate expresses their views, opinions, or attitudes.
  • The popularity and acceptability of the candidates and political parties can be measured through an election.
  • Election offers a smooth and peaceful method of changing government thereby ensuring political stability.
  • Election promotes wide-scope political participation.

Types of Election

There are two types of election: Direct and Indirect election.

  • Direct Election: An election is direct when the electorate chooses by themselves directly the candidates of their choice. Under the direct election, every candidate is entitled to one vote.
  • Indirect Election: In an Indirect election, the candidate or representatives are not chosen by the electorate directly. The electorate first elects an electoral college which in turn elects the representatives of the people.


(b) Why are Elections Conducted in a State?

Answer: Elections are conducted in a state for the following reasons:

  • Forming Government: In this modern time, the executive arm of government is directly elected through an election.
  • Representation: Election serves the purpose of representation. The demands of the public are channelled to the government through elected representatives.
  • Influencing Policy: Elections deter the government from pursuing policies that are not in the best interest of the public. A government whose policies do not favour the citizens would be voted out in the next election.
  • Educating Voters: Election provides baseline information about the government in power, political parties, the candidates, and the entire political system. The information is provided during campaigns for votes.
  • Legitimacy: Elections confer legitimacy on the government or its elected representatives. Through free and fair elections, the electorate transfers their mandate to the government, thereby making the exercise of authority legitimate.
  • Recruitment: Election provides the platform for political recruitment. Politicians with talents such as charisma, Oratorical skills, and good appearance are nominated as flag bearers of political parties.
  • Accountability: The anticipation of an upcoming election forces politicians to account for their stewardship. This singular function of election compels the government to listen to people’s demands and incorporate them into their policies.


2. Write Short Notes on: (i) Suffrage (ii) Limited Suffrage (iii) Universal Adult Suffrage (iv) Franchise


  • Suffrage: Suffrage is the right to vote in public or political elections. It is the inalienable right of citizens to vote in an election. This is granted to only qualified citizens who are of voting age of the state and have met other qualifications as defined by the law of the state.
  • Limited Suffrage: Limited Suffrage is the type of suffrage where the right to vote and to be voted for is not extended to all citizens but only to those who meet the criteria laid down by law. These criteria may be arbitrary or discriminatory. It is also known as Restricted Suffrage.
  • Universal Adult Suffrage: Universal adult suffrage allows all qualified adults the right to vote and be voted for irrespective of sex, religion, race, and economic status. However, there are still some conditions that do not entitle or qualify everyone to vote.
  • Franchise: Franchise is the political right of qualified citizens to vote and be voted for in an election.


3. What are the Conditions for Exercising Voting Rights in Nigeria? Or What are the Conditions for Exercising Suffrage?


Condition for exercising suffrage includes:

  • Age: Age qualifies citizens to vote. This varies from one country to another. In Nigeria, the voting age is 18 years.
  • Citizenship: To vote in a country, you need to be a legal, bonafide member of the state.
  • Mental Balance: A voter in the state must be mentally sound. He must be sane enough to make informed decisions on voting in an election.
  • Residence: To vote, one must have lived in the country or that part of the country for a considerable period of time.
  • Registration: a voter needs to register. It is the duty of the Electoral Commission to make adequate preparations for voter registration.
  • Sex: In some countries, the sex of voters is a condition for exercising suffrage. Women are restricted from vying for elective offices in some countries.
  • Education: Education qualification is still an important restriction. There are different levels of educational qualification for different electoral offices e.g. In Nigeria, the constitution or electoral laws specify education qualifications for each elective post.


4. Give the Merits and Demerits of Universal Adult Suffrage. Or What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Universal Adult Suffrage?


Merits of Universal Adult Suffrage:

  • It grants qualified citizens equal opportunity to vote, one man one vote.
  • It is democratic, and constitutional and promotes equity and fair play.
  • Election results reflect the popular choice, political sovereignty.
  • It promotes greater political participation as more people participate.
  • It promotes political enlightenment.

Demerits of Universal Adult Suffrage:

  • It allows many adults who may not be rational and objective to vote.
  • It may breed electoral malpractice as the electoral commission may not effectively control the large number of voters that may be participating in elections.
  • The majority of the voters are poor. Many of the voters end up selling their votes to the highest bidder.
  • There is an increase in intimidation, thuggery, and harassment of opponents. All these encourage political apathy.

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