Lesson One: Law and Order

Law and Order
Law and Order is a condition in which the existing rules, regulations, norms and related legal codes are recognized and observed for the sustenance of peace, orderliness and security of lives and property in society.

Meaning of Orderliness
Orderliness refers to doing things right and in accordance with norms, values, traditions and laws of the society.

It is also called obedience to rules and regulations governing the society. Orderliness also means, conforming to the norms, rules, traditions and regulations by which a society is governed.

Examples of Orderliness
Examples of orderliness are many in the society. Some of them are:

1. Obedience to school rules and regulations.
2. Respect for adult members of the community.
3. Assisting the poor and the needy in the community.
4. Active participation in environmental sanitation exercise to keep diseases away from the people.
5. Showing good examples to others.
6. Honesty, loyalty, and being hardworking.
7. Queuing at public places for attention, for example in banks and hospitals.

Effects of Law and Order on Nigerians
i It ensures peace and harmony in the society.
ii. It guarantees security of life and property of Nigerians.
iii. It promotes orderly behaviour of citizens/queuing culture.
iv. It ensures social stability in human relationships among Nigerians.

v It promotes socio-economic development.
vi. It promotes effective function of societal institutions.
vil It promotes accountability of the government to the governed.
viii. It ensures tolerance of other people’s opinions.
ix. It ensures obedience to constituted authorities.
x. It enhances due process/justice/equity/fairness.

Constituted Authority
Constituted authority refers to an individual, group or body vested with legitimate power to carry out specific duties for the common good of a group or society.

Lawful and constitutional power derived from a legally binding process is known as constituted authority. It is the legal power to govern a place, town, state, country, etc. Anyone that exercises legal and constitutional power is said to be exercising constituted authority.

Types and Forms of Constituted Authority
Positions of authority exercised by individuals or groups can be seen in different forms. Some of these are as follows:

1. In the family, the father and mother are in the position of authority. The father is the head of the family.

2. At the community level, constituted authority is exercised by the traditional ruler.

3. Members of the national assembly exercise constitutional powers.

4. In the judiciary, we have the judges and magistrates in positions of authority.

5. The uniformed men and women are also in positions of authority. This is because they are representing the people and the State. Examples of these are members of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and the Police.

Also the paramilitary uniformed men and women are in positions of authority. These include the civil defence corps, immigration, and customs officers.

Advantages of Constituted Authority
1 Constituted authority facilitates the execution/implementation of the programmes of the society or group.

2. Constituted authorities assist in enforcing the rules and ensuring compliance by members of the society or group.

3 Constituted authorities assist in formulating policies and making decisions on behalf of the entire members of the society or group.

4 Constituted authority arbitrates when there ¡s conflict among members of the society or group.

5. Constituted authority facilitates the making of laws, rules and regulations that guide the conduct of members of the group or society.

6. Constituted authority provides role models for the members of the group or society.

7. Constituted authority contributes to the social, economic and political development of the group or society.

8. Constituted authority contributes to the smooth running of the society.

9. Constituted authority ensures stability and continuity in the society

10. Constituted authority helps to maintain good interpersonal/inter-communal relations

Importance of Constituted Authority
The people at the helm of affairs perform important roles. Some roles include:

1. Protection of lives and property. This is done through the police, the army, the navy, the air force and other paramilitary agencies of the State.

2. Social welfare and social security provision. State governments and local governments are expected to take charge of this provision.

3. In education, we have the head teacher at the primary school, the principal at the secondary school, the rector at the polytechnic, the provost at the college of education, and the vice chancellor at the university as constituted authority. These persons provide leadership as well as care for the pupils and students and for all the staff

4. At the grassroot or local government level, legal authority belongs to the elected chairmen and the councillors. Similarly, State governors and their deputies, as well as Houses of Assembly members and Judicial officers represent constituted authority. These persons and officials under them are responsible for good government at the State level.

5. At the federal government level, we have the elected president, vice president and ministers at the helm of affairs. They see to the provision of what makes life bearable for the citizens such as military defence, electricity, good roads, employment and the creation of a conducive environment for economic growth.

6. Generally, people at the helm of affairs make laws and regulations for the smooth running of society and for the provision of social amenities for the citizens.

7. Constituted authority also seeks good working relationship with other nations of the world for peaceful coexistence.

Scroll Down to Select Page 3 for the next topic – Lesson Two: Human Rights


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