what is the role of political parties in a democracy

Topics: Democracy, Political party, Human rights Pages: 8 (2594 words) Published: November 10, 2013
UNIVERSITY OF BOTSWANA

BACHELOR OF SOCIAL WORK

INTRODUCTION TO POLITICAL SCIENCE-POL101

QUESTION 1: WHAT IS THE ROLE OF POLITICAL PARTIES IN DEMOCRACY? DISCUSS WITH THE AID OF EXAMPLES.

04/10/2013

INTRODUCTION
The purpose of this essay is to discuss the roles of political parties in a democracy. Before going any further, the discussion will start with an introduction where key terminologies making the question will be defined, secondly a discussion on roles played by political parties in a democracy with the aid of examples and lastly a conclusion based on the discussion. The key terminologies to be defined are role, politics, political parties and democracy. The term role which was first recorded in English in 1606 came from French already having the sense, a part one has to play states ”. Meanwhile role according to it is a function or positions that need to be played. Furthermore the writer mentions that politics focuses on conflicts and differences of perspective in a society about what to do, what resources to collect for public use and how those resources should be spent. Another author argues that politics is simply the activity by which Government is made possible when different interests in an area to be governed grows powerful enough to need to be conciliated thus the solution to the problem of order which chooses conciliation rather than violence. Moreover political parties according to are special form of social organization and should not be confused with associations, federations and social clubs. In addition states that a well-known definition of political parties comes from the American Political Scientist Antony Downs who wrote; A political party is a team of men seeking to control the governing apparatus by gaining office in a duly constituted election. Furthermore the Italian scholar Glovanni Sartoi who has lectured for a long time at the Columbia University and is internationally one of the most well-known researches on political parties defined political parties as any political group identified by an official label that presents at elections and is capable of placing through elections candidates for public officer . With this, political parties can therefore be understood as permanent associations of citizens that are based on free membership and a program which is anxious to occupy through the path of elections and also focus on the politically decisive positions of the country with their team leaders in order to materialize suggestions for resolving outstanding problems. A political party is an organized group of people with at least roughly similar political aims and opinions that seek to influence the public, policy by getting its candidate elected to public office according to . Edmund Burke defined political party as a body of men united for promoting their joint endeavors that national interest upon some particular principles in which they all agreed states . Moving on, democracy according to is defined by certain fundamental principles and practices that permeate society and the primary principle being that all persons are equal and maintain certain individual rights. Democracy exits when citizens are able to participate actively in the life of their society by exercising their individual rights such as freedom of expression and speech, freedom of assembly and association, freedom of religion and conscience to petition the Government and to vote in fair elections argues . Furthermore another writer states that democracy is Government by people and also fits the etymology of the term demos meaning the people and kratein meaning to rule are its Greek roots. In addition defines democracy as a way of making collective decisions in society and requires free, fair and competitive elections, in order to choose government leaders and also entails respect for the freedoms and basic rights of citizens, a capacity to deliver justice and respect for the rule of...

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