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Government Lesson Note for SS2 (First Term) 2023

Government lesson note for SS2 First Term is now available for free. The State and Federal Ministry of Education has recommended unified lesson notes for all secondary schools in Nigeria, in other words, all private secondary schools in Nigeria must operate with the same lesson notes based on the scheme of work for Government.

Government lesson note for SS2  First Term has been provided in detail here on

Government Lesson Note for SS2 (First Term) [year] 1

For prospective school owners, teachers, and assistant teachers, Government lesson note is defined as a guideline that defines the contents and structure of Government as a subject offered at SS level. The lesson note for Government for SS stage maps out in clear terms, how the topics and subtopics for a particular subject, group works and practical, discussions and assessment strategies, tests, and homework ought to be structured in order to fit in perfectly, the approved academic activities for the session.

To further emphasize the importance of this document, the curriculum for Government spells out the complete guide on all academic subjects in theory and practical. It is used to ensure that the learning purposes, aims, and objectives of the subject meant for that class are successfully achieved.

Government Lesson note for SS2 carries the same aims and objectives but might be portrayed differently based on how it is written or based on how you structure your lesson note. Check how to write lesson notes as this would help make yours unique.

The SS2 Government lesson note provided here is in line with the current scheme of work hence, would go a long way in not just helping the teachers in carefully breaking down the subject, topics, and subtopics but also, devising more practical ways of achieving the aim and objective of the subject.

The sudden increase in the search for SS2 Government lesson note for First Term is expected because every term, tutors are in need of a robust lesson note that carries all topics in the curriculum as this would go a long way in preparing students for the West African Secondary Examination.

This post is quite a lengthy one as it provides in full detail, the Government-approved lesson note for all topics and sub-topics in Government as a subject offered in SS2.

Please note that Government lesson note for SS2 provided here for First Term is approved by the Ministry of Education based on the scheme of work.

I made it free for tutors, parents, guardians, and students who want to read ahead of what is being taught in class.

SS2 Government Lesson Note (First Term) 2023





CLASS:         SS2






1.Revision of work done in SS1/Electoral Process: (1) Election: (a) Election: meaning and purpose. (b) Suffrage: meaning, history and types. (c) Franchise: meaning, purpose and types. (d) Purposes of holding elections.

2.Electoral Process: (2) Types of Electoral System: (a) Characteristics, advantages and disadvantages of electoral systems. (b) Types – (i) Simple, (ii) Absolute, (iii) Proportional representation, (iv) Direct and Indirect electoral system. (c) Second ballot.

3.Electoral Process: (3) Organization of Elections:  (a) Features of Free and Fair Elections. (b) The stage of elections. (c) Transparency. (d) Free and fair elections. (e) Integrity, honesty.

4.Electoral Process: (4) Electoral Commission and Electoral Officials: (a) Electoral Commission: (i) Roles or duties (ii) Problems (iii) Organization. (b) Electoral officials: (i) Electoral officer (ii) Supervisory Presiding Officer, (iii) Presiding Officer, (iv) Polling Clerk  (v) Polling Agent.

5.Public Opinion: (a) Definition of public opinion. (b) How public opinion is formed. (c) Measurement of public opinion. (iv)  Importance of public opinion.

6.Mass Media: (a) Mass media – meaning, roles, impact. (b) Watch dog.

7.Mid-Term Break


8.Civil Service: (a) Meaning of Civil Service. (b) Characteristics of the Civil Service. (c) Functions. (d) Structure of the Civil Service. (i) Administrative/professional. (ii) Executive. (iii) Clerical, etc. (e) Honesty, integrity.

9.Personnel Administration in the Civil Service: (a) Meaning of the Civil Service Commission. (b) Functions of the Civil Service Commission. (c) Relationship between the Civil Service and Political executives.

10.Public Corporations: (1) Meaning – (a) Definition. (b) Reasons for setting public corporations. (c) Functions of public corporations. (d) Examples of public corporations.






DATE: ………………….


CONTENT: (a) Election: meaning, purpose and types.

(b) Suffrage/Franchise: meaning, history and types.


Sub-Topic 1: ELECTIONS

Meaning and purpose of Elections:

Election is defined as the act of electing candidates to represent the people   of a given country in the parliament, the executive and into other positions in government as stipulated in the constitution of that particular country. It can also be defined as the process of selecting the peoples’ representatives in democratic process.

The main purpose of election is to choose the candidate that will represent the people in political offices. Elections allow the people to choose between two or more alternatives and to declare their support for one person or idea against the other.



There are two major types of election namely: Direct election and indirect election.

Direct Election: This can be defined as a type of election in which the electorates of a country choose and cast their votes directly to select their representatives. Direct election is very democratic in the sense that it allows mass participation in election and gives the citizens a sense of belonging as they choose their leaders. Many countries of the world have adopted this type because it creates good relationship between the voters and their representatives. Direct election is associated with the principle of one man one vote, in which every voter has only one vote to cast and each vote is equal to the other.

Indirect Election: this refers to the system where the eligible voters select representatives who would make selection of leaders on their behalf (i.e. the Electoral College). The people do not vote directly for their representatives. Here the voting is done in stages. The voters elect those who would finally vote for those to represent them. Indirect election was practiced in Nigeria in 1977 when the elected councilors in turn elected members of assembly constituent. Most countries that use parliamentary system of government use the indirect election. For instance, in Britain, the people elect the members of parliament who will then elect the prime minister on behalf of the people. Other types of election include those that fall under either direct or indirect election. The type a country operates depends on the purpose and the nature of voting.

Referendum: this is a type of election conducted for people to vote for issues and not human beings. This helps to ascertain the opinion of the people on an important national issue. When laws on a constitutional amendment are referred to the electorates for final approval through election, we call it referendum.

Plebiscite: A vote by the people of a country, state or local government in respect of a dispute or a contentious issue is called a plebiscite. In this type of election, the voters are expected to give a YES or NO answer to the question asked. A plebiscite can be held on the country’s future system of government, creation of more local governments or states.

General Election: it is called general election because it involves all the electorates and covers election of members of both the executive and legislative arms of government. At the same time and date approved by the electoral body, all the political parties vie or contest for election. These elections are held periodically according to the constitution of the country.

Primary Election: this is a type of election conducted or held within a party to elect candidates who will represent the party in the general election. The candidates are also called flag bearers of the party.

Bye – Elections: It is a type of election conducted to fill a vacant position caused by death or resignation. Sometimes, a legislator or any other political office holder may die or resign or he may be called by his constituency for wrong doing or non-performance. When this happens, an election will be conducted to fill that vacant seat.

Run – Off Election: this is a type of election conducted so that a winner can emerge after the first has failed to produce a winner. For example, if two candidates got the same number of votes, a second election called Run – Off will be conducted to determine the winner.


Suffrage (franchise) is the political right granted under law to adult (male and female) citizens of a given country to vote and be voted for in an election. Those that are to vote in an election are called the electorates or voters while those to be voted for are called the candidates.


In the past, the right to vote was restricted to the rich and the nobles. The poor, women and slaves were not given the right to vote and be voted for. Even in the celebrated Greek city state of Athens, women, foreigners and slaves were excluded. In the USA, only white male property owners were allowed to vote in the early stage of American democracy. As the time progressed, people gained political education that made them aware of their rights. Consequently, there were agitation and demand for democratic rule including universal suffrage at the beginning of 18th century (1900s).

Summarily, we can trace the evolution of suffrage to include the following stages:

i.Membership of some bodies or associations;

ii.Lowering of property qualifications;

iii.Acceptance of the idea of manhood suffrage;

iv.Extension of the franchise to women; and

v.Lowering of the age qualification.


There are two types of suffrage/franchise namely: Limited or restricted franchise/suffrage and unlimited or universal adult franchise/suffrage.

  1. Limited or Restricted Suffrage: In this type of suffrage, not all qualified adults are allowed to vote or to be voted for. Suffrage is granted to only those adults that fulfill certain conditions. Such conditions to vote and be voted for may depend on the following:

i.Sex: in some countries, only the males are allowed to vote and contest in elections.

ii.Race or colour:  This is when restrictions are placed on certain race and colours not to vote or contest in elections. Example was in South Africa when only the whites were allowed to participate in the electoral processed.

iii.Residential qualification: Before an individual can vote in an election, he/she would have lived in that area for a certain period of time.

iv.Education: in some countries, the level of education will determine a voter’s eligibility.

v.Religion: Religion is also a deciding factor in some countries.

vi.Wealth: The class of a person, whether rich or poor, will determine whether he/she is qualified to vote in an election. Poverty can deny a citizen the right to vote and be voted for.

  1. Unlimited Franchise or Universal Adult Suffrage: In this type of suffrage, all qualified adults (men and women) are allowed to vote and be voted for in an election. This type of franchise is the most popular and universally acknowledged. It is constitutional and democratic.

However, there are conditions to be met under unlimited franchise before an individual can vote or be voted for. These include:

i.Age: For example in Nigeria, Britain and USA, a person cannot vote unless he/she is eighteen years. Those of German and India are twenty and twenty-one years respectively.

  1. Citizenship: Only the legal citizen of a country can vote and be voted for in most democratic processes.

iii.Registration: Only those that are properly registered and issued with voters cards can vote in elections.

iv.Sanity: A mentally derailed person cannot be allowed to vote at election despite the fact that it is a universal/unlimited franchise.

v.Bankruptcy: those declared bankrupt cannot vote or be voted for.



1.Define election.

2.What is franchise?

3.What are the two types of franchise?



The central purposes of holding election include the following:

i.Forming government: The primary aim of a political party is to win elections to form government. It is through election that leaders are chosen to form government.

ii.Political education:  through campaigns, the electorates are adequately informed about the different manifestoes of the competing political parties. This gives them the opportunities to know their political rights and make choices among the competing political parties.

iii.Political participation by citizen: Elections are avenues through which the masses can participate in government by voting for the candidates/parties of their choice or contesting as a candidate.

iv.Smooth change/succession of government: Elections make peaceful change of political leaders possible. Elections to win different seats are conducted during a general election or any other election to change leaders.

v.Legitimacy of political authority: During elections, leaders are chosen by the popular mandate of the electorates; hence, such leaders chosen by elections have legitimate political authority.

vi.Popular support for the polity and the political system:   In a democratic process, the masses are given the opportunity to vote for the candidates of their choice. The result of such elections will produce candidates of peoples’ choice. This will make such leaders popular and have the support of the people.

vii.Accountability of leaders: Since democratic rulers are faced with elections, they tend to adopt good governance with a view to impressing the electorates. This is so because the people have the voting power to oust any unpopular government.

viii.Used as a measurement: Results of elections can be used to measure the opinions of the people on issues of national importance.

ix.Equality of votes: Elections enhances equality of votes of citizens. It is a case of one man, one vote.

x.Competition: Elections promote competition among the political parties and even candidates. Competition is healthy and it makes for efficiency.




1.Write out and explain five reasons for holding elections.

2.When last was the general election held in your country?


1.Define election.

2.What is franchise?

3.What are the two types of franchise?

4.Write out and explain five reasons for holding election.

5.State five conditions required for voting during election in Nigeria.


Choose the correct answers from the options

1.The process of choosing representatives by the electorates is known as ……………..

(a)franchise (b) election (c) suffrage (d) government (e) electorates.

2.………………. is the political right granted under law to adult (male and female) citizens of a given country to vote and be voted for in an election. (a) Manifesto (b) Political parties (c) Suffrage (d) Candidate (e) Representative.

3.The two types of franchise are limited/restricted suffrage and ……………… suffrage.

(a)universal adult (b) financial (c) political (d) electoral (e) seasonal

4.In Nigeria, the voting age is …………..years. (a) 18 (b) 20 (c) 21 (d) 31 (e) 12

5.Which of the following is not a limitation to universal adult suffrage?

(a)Age (b) Sanity (c) Bankruptcy (d) Registration (e) Race



1.Search from Google the type(s) of electoral system used in Nigeria in the last general election.

2.List 5 limitations to universal adult suffrage.


Read Melrose Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012) Pages 1–6.


Read about the types of Electoral Systems.







DATE: ………………….


CONTENT: (a) Meaning of electoral process/system

(b) Types of electoral process/systems.

(c) Characteristics, Advantages and Disadvantages of Electoral Systems.


An electoral system may be defined as the process and procedure by which citizens of a democratic country select through either direct voting or indirectly those who will represent them in the parliament and other positions in the government. It also includes the conditions and processes for the nomination of candidates for elective posts including procedures and rules of election.

Characteristics of an Electoral System

i.An independent electoral commission.

ii.Periodic and regular elections.

iii.Adoption of secret voting system.

iv.Delimitation of the country into constituencies.

v.The adoption of universal adult suffrage.

vi.Voting atmosphere devoid of fear of molestation and victimization.

vii.Provisions for the representation of all interest groups in the legislature.

viii.There should be an acceptable method of nominating candidates for elections.

ix.The requirements for qualification as election candidate must be clearly stipulated.

x.Compilation of comprehensive voters’ register that should embrace all qualified voters.

xi.Regular and public display of voters’ lists.

xii.Periodic revision of voters’ lists.

xi.Adequate political education for the electorates.

xii.There should be independent judiciary that will handle election petitions without fear or favour.

xiii.Ballot papers should be tightly secured.

xiv.Counting of votes should be publicly done and the results released immediately.

xv.Polling offices and officers, ballot boxes and papers, and other necessary materials should be adequately provided and on time.

xvi.There should be a period for political parties to campaign for votes.

xvii.Certain persons like lunatics, under – aged persons, criminals, bankrupts, etc. should not be allowed to vote in an election.


1.SIMPLE PLURALITY OR SIMPLE MAJORITY SYSTEM:  This is an electoral system in which the candidate with the highest number of votes is declared the winner though he might not have scored the majority of the votes cast. It is also called the first–past–the – post system. It is common in the commonwealth countries and United States of America (USA).

Advantages of simple plurality or simple majority system

i.The system is very simple to operate especially in backward nations.

ii.It makes it easy for the election result to be ascertained.

iii.The system discourages the formation of coalition government.

  1. It encourages the strengthening of party organization because it emphasizes competition among political parties rather than candidates.

v.Political stability is encouraged through the elimination of smaller political parties.

vi.The procedure of voting is so simple that it appeals to both the literates and the illiterates.

vii.Simple voting procedure enables a voter to vote directly for or against a particular candidate or policy.

viii.It makes the elected candidate to be responsible and accountable to voters.

ix.Minority groups have the chance of ruling through this system.

Disadvantages of simple plurality or simple majority system

i.It gives room for election rigging in order to secure the highest number of votes.

ii.It is possible for unpopular and ineffective politicians to win election in this system.

iii.The system does not produce result that reflects the wishes of the majority.

  1. Major ethnic groups can use their majority strength to secure simple majority at the expense of minority groups.

v.The system leads to waste of surplus votes of majority of the voters.

  1. ABSOLUTE MAJORITY: In this system, a candidate must score more than half or more than 50% of the total votes cast before he can be declared the winner. If this is not obtained at the first election by any of the candidates, then a second ballot is required. Those having unacceptably low result would be eliminated. The winning candidate is then required to obtain a simple majority.

Advantages of Absolute Majority System

i.It is the reflection of the wishes of the majority of the electorates.

ii.No room for unpopular candidate because the system does not allow such to be elected easily.

iii.It produces credible candidates, judging from the outcome of the election.

iv.It does not encourage the formation of coalition government since the ruling government enjoys absolute majority in government.

v.It enhances good governance because the rulers will like to justify the confidence of the people in them.

Disadvantages of Absolute Majority System

i.It is expensive and time consuming because if no candidate wins the election in the first ballot, another voting would be required and could be expensive and time consuming.

ii.Rigging of results is also possible in order to secure the required number of votes.

iii.It may lead to delay in releasing election result especially if a winner could not emerge after the first ballot.

iv.It can encourage political apathy if there is need for second ballot. Some voters may not show interest if their candidates are dropped in the second election.

v.The system may weaken smaller political parties because it may not be possible for them to secure majority of the votes cast.


1.Mention the two types of electoral systems you have studied.

2.Explain simple plurality or simple majority system as an electoral system.

3.What are the advantages of absolute majority electoral system?




This is a system of allocating seats in the legislature in such a way that each political party or group is given a percentage of seats roughly equal to the percentage of popular votes cast in its favour.

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The essence of proportional representation is to allocate seats in proportion to votes cast in the multi-member constituencies. It is a method used to elect representatives into the legislature. The total number of votes which a party or group scores is calculated in proportion to the total number of votes cast.

There are two types of proportional representation: the list system and single transferable vote.

The list system: It is used in multi-member electorates where votes are cast in order of preference for the party which has registered a list of candidates. Parties receive seats in proportion to their overall share of the total vote and winning candidates are taken from the list in order of their position.

Single transferable vote:  All candidates in multi-member constituencies are marked in order of preference by the voters. After counting the votes, an electoral quota are established, i.e., the minimum number of votes needed by a candidate to win one of the seats, the surplus votes is redistributed to other candidates in order of preference. The weakest candidates are then eliminated and their votes are redistributed according to the voter’s second, third, etc. preferences.

Advantages of proportional representation

i.It allows all votes cast to count. That is, there are no vote wastages.

ii.It is democratic because it is a true picture of real democracy.

iii.Proportional representations permit all seats to be given equal weights.

iv.The system, especially in a multi-member constituency, gives the voters wider choice.

v.The system protects the interests of the minority groups.

vi.It provides representation for all interest groups in a community.

vii.It permits free expression of individual opinion.

Disadvantages of proportional representation

i.It is a complicated form of election of representatives.

ii.The system is also very expensive to operate.

iii. It encourages multiplication of political parties which results in election violence.

  1. The system does not create room for political stability.
  2. It leads to forming coalition government which does not make for efficiency.
  3. The multiplication of political parties makes it difficult for the voters to assess them very well before voting; they therefore vote blindly.


4.ALTERNATIVE VOTING SYSTEM: this system that is principally used in Australia toes the line of absolute majority system. In it, a voter is given a ballot paper with the names of the contesting candidates. The voter has to vote by assigning numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc. in order of his preference depending on the number of candidates contesting the election. That is, the voter will indicate how he likes the candidates in order of his preference.

At the end of the voting, the ballot papers are sorted and arranged according to first preference of the candidates and counted. That means that every candidate receives ballot paper in which number one is marked against his name. If no candidate secures majority at the end of counting, the candidate with the lowest number will be distributed to other candidates according to the second preference on the papers. Where no candidate still secures preferential absolute majority, the process will continue until one candidate secures absolute majority of the total votes cast in the constituency.

Advantages of alternative voting system

i.Government or candidates backed by majority of the voters are elected through this system.

ii.This system represents the interest of the various different groups in a country.

iii.The system is more democratic than plurality system because it takes care of the wishes of the majority of the voters.

iv.It does not enthrone mediocre in power.

  1. The system avoids waste of surplus votes.

Disadvantages of Alternative Voting System

i.It is complex to operate.

ii.It encourages the formation of many political parties.

iii.The system is not good for underdeveloped nation because majority of the citizens are illiterates who can never understand the system.

iv.It is very difficult to ascertain election result in this system.

v.The system is prone to election malpractices because of the continuous distribution and counting of votes.

vi.It is too expensive to operate, and time and energy wasting.


This is a system in which the electorates vote directly to elect their representatives into the various positions in government.

Advantages of Direct Electoral System

1.It gives individuals the opportunity of choosing their leaders by themselves.

2.It encourages mass participation of the citizens in the political affairs of their country.

3.It promotes the growth of democracy, rule of law and political stability since the election of leaders is based on the express wishes of the people.

4.It creates a good rapport between the voters and the leaders.

5.It gives the voters the opportunity to vote for parties with attractive policies.

Disadvantages of Direct Electoral System

  1. It is expensive to operate because it will require a lot of money to purchase great number of ballot papers, construction of polling booths, registration of eligible voters etc.
  2. It does not give voters the opportunity to critically scrutinize the candidates before voting.
  3. It encourages violence during voting due to the great number of people involved.
  4. It involves a lot of election rigging because it is the final election to select representatives.
  5. Many voters are illiterates and therefore may vote blindly.


It is a system by which citizens elect their leaders indirectly through Electoral College meaning that, the electorate will vote for some representatives who will in turn vote on their behalf for other leaders.

Advantages of Indirect Electoral System

  1. It is very cheap because it involves fewer numbers of people.
  2. It raises the quality of law makers and laws because competent voters are involved in the final selection process.
  3. It may reduce electoral malpractice since the final voters are more enlightened.
  4. It reduces disorderliness and political violence.

Disadvantages of Indirect Electoral System

  1. It is undemocratic because it denied eligible voters the opportunity of electing their leaders directly.

2.It encourages bribery and corruption because the few people involved in the final selection may be bought over by a particular candidate or party.

3.It does not provide the citizens with equality of votes in the country.

4.It may lead to the formation of unpopular government.

5.It can lead to political apathy.


The second ballot is an electoral system in which the two candidates who secured the highest number of votes are made to contest the election at a later date. Voters who supported the less successful candidates are able to switch their support to either of the leading candidates until a candidate secures simple majority of votes and wins.

This system is used in France and Germany. It encourages the emergence of a winner with the support of the majority. Nevertheless, the system involves waste of time and money.


  1. What are the disadvantages of alternative voting system?
  2. Which of the electoral systems you have studied was used in the last general election of your country?


1.Mention four types of electoral systems you have studied.

2.Explain simple plurality or simple majority system as an electoral system.

3.What are the advantages of absolute majority electoral system?

4.What are the disadvantages of alternative vote system?

5.Mention two electoral systems used in your country in the last elections.


1.An elected politician represents all the following except……(a) his constituency (b) the electorates  (c) the government (d) his political party  (e) his community.

  1. Which of the following statements is correct about proportional representation? It

(a) makes the assembly representative of all citizens (b) is simple to operate (c) preserves the two party system (d) gives the parties seats in relation to their popular support (e) legalizes dictatorship

  1.  Another name for the first-past-the-post system of voting is the …. (a) second ballot system (b) alternative voting method (c) simple majority method (d) single transferable voting method (e) multi–member voting method.
  2. Where no absolute majority is obtained in the first round of elections, the most viable option is the ….. (a) simple majority (b) proportional representation (c) second ballot (d) bye-election (e) second ballot withdrawal.
  3. Which of the following is not a method of election? (a) Simple majority (b) Proportional representation (c) Single member constituency (d) Plurality system (e) Absolute majority.


1.Explain each of the following electoral systems: simple plurality system, the repeated ballot, second ballot, alternative vote system.

  1. Write out five features of free and fair election.


Read Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited. (Pages 7–11).


Read about the organization of elections.




DATE: ………………….

TOPIC: ELECTORAL PROCESS (3) – Organization of Elections

CONTENT: (a) Features of Free and Fair Election

(b) The Stages of Election


Free and fair election is a necessary condition for a democratic government. A free and fair election refers to one conducted in an atmosphere devoid of harassment, intimidation and other coercive means in order to bend the will of voters and according to constitutional procedure. It produces legitimate government.


The features are as follows:

i.Fair Delimitation of Constituencies: The country should be divided into constituencies in such a way that the electorates are fairly represented. Equal constituencies should return equal number of representatives.

ii.Independent and Impartial electoral Commission: There should be in existence an independent electoral commission established by the constitution. The commission should be free from government intervention in the conduct of elections. The commission should be non–partisan and should also inspire the confidence of the people.

iii.Regular Election:  election should be held at periodic and regular intervals. The periodic intervals vary from country to country. However, a four or five year interval is the normal period for elections. That of Nigeria is a – four year interval for the presidency, national and state assemblies, and governorship (gubernatorial) elections.

iv.Periodic Revision of Voters’ Register: The voters’ register should be constantly revised to ensure that all qualified candidates are included. The commission should make proper arrangement to compile the names of eligible voters.

v.Secret Ballots: Voting at election should be by secret ballot to enable voters vote for their candidates without fear of molestation or victimization. Open ballot is undemocratic as it does not allow voters to express their real mind.

vi.Impartial Law Enforcement Officers: law enforcement should be impartial. They should give equal treatment to all candidates and political parties involved in the election.

vii.Equality of Votes: The votes cast by different voters should be equal in value. Free and fair elections also demand the principle of ‘one man, one vote’.

viii.Public Counting and Declaration of Results: The counting of votes after election must be done immediately, publicly and immediately after counting, the result should be announced.

ix.Opportunity for Petition:  The electoral law must provide opportunity for candidates who are not satisfied with the conduct and result of the elections to challenge them in an election tribunal and should be able to appeal against tribunal or lower court decisions.

x.Election Materials: All election materials like ballot boxes, papers, etc. should be adequately supplied at the appropriate time to avoid problems of logistics.

xi.Transparency: People of transparent, honest and proven integrity should be selected as officials of the electoral commission.

xii.The electoral officials and the ad-hoc staff for the election should be adequately trained and remunerated.




1.What do you understand by a free and fair election?

2.List six features of a free and fair election.



i.Registration of Political Parties: all the political parties willing to contest in a general election must register with their names and logos with the electoral body of the country. This will give the electoral body the opportunity to plan well before the election.

ii.Registration of all Eligible Voters before the Actual Election: the names of all eligible voters are compiled in voters’ register in preparation for the election.

iii.Revision and Update of Voters Register: there are possibilities that some of the voters have died after the last election or there might be some children that just attain the voting age. These call for the revision and update of the register.

iv.Delimitation of Constituencies:   The country is divided into smaller units known as constituencies. The constituencies may be single member or multi-member. Factors that determine the delimitation of constituencies include population, local political situation and administrative boundaries. For political manipulation, a system called gerrymandering may be introduced.  Gerrymandering is a political devise to ensure the constituency delimitation works in favour of a particular candidate or political party.

v.Nomination of Candidates: In Nigeria, and other places where political parties operate, it is the political parties that nominate candidates after the parties’ primaries. However, the electoral body will still screen the candidates to know their eligibility before contesting in the election.

vi.Election Campaigns: The electoral commission has to issue out political campaign time-table before the conduct of the election.

vii.Fixing of Election Date: Election dates and time table must be in place and be made public before the Election Day. It has to come on time so that the concerned political parties and the electorates will get prepared.

viii.Appointment/Recruitment of Ad-hoc Staff to be used by the Electoral Commission:  Those officers must be well trained along with the staff of the electoral commission.

ix.Posting of these Electoral Officers: to the different locations where they will serve.

x.Pasting of Posters by Electoral Commission at the various places for enlightenment purpose.

xi.Distribution of Electoral Materials to the Various Centers: All the materials needed for the conduct of the election should be ready and distributed to the various polling centres before the commencement of the voting.

xii.The Actual Voting will commence at the various stations.

xiii.Counting of Votes/Ballot Papers: After the conclusion of the elections, the electoral commission will now count the ballot papers to ascertain winners of such election.

xiv. Declaration of Election Results by the Returning Officer: The returning officer for such election will announce the result of such election.

xv.Issuance Certificate of return: The electoral commission will issue certificate of return to winners of the various elections.

xvi.Swearing–in of Winners: the final stage of the electoral process is to swear in the elected representatives of the people by the judicial officials.



1.Mention ten stages of election.

2.Explain any five of the stages mentioned in (a) above.


1.What do you understand by a free and fair election?

2.List six features of a free and fair election.

3.Mention ten stages of election.

4.Explain any five of the stages mentioned in question 3 above.

5.What do you think will be the consequences when any of the election stages is not well managed?


1.The major advantages of secret ballot is that …(a) it is faster than other systems (b) nobody can be prevented from voting (c) it ensure the anonymity of every voter (d) loser can ask for another secret voter (e) it extends the franchise to every adult.

2.Free and fair elections can exist where there is ….. (a) double voting (b) secret balloting  (c) referendum (d) plebiscite

3.A citizen can participate in the politics of his country by … (a) acquiring university education (b) attending international meetings (c) contesting for an elective post  (d) being a good sportsman

4.A free and fair election requires all the following except…… (a) political parties (b) a long campaign period (c) gerrymandered constituencies (d) registration of all qualified voters

5.All the following are stages of election except …… (a) registration of eligible voters (b) announcement of results (c) courtesy visit to the electoral chairman’s office by the candidates (d) electoral campaigns by the political parties.


Read Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited. Pages 12–15.


Read about Electoral Commission and Electoral Officials.




DATE: ………………….

TOPIC: ELECTORAL PROCESS (4) – Electoral Commission and Electoral Officials

CONTENT: (a) Electoral Commission: Role or duties, problems and organization.

(b) Electoral Officials: Electoral officer, Supervisory Presiding Officer, Polling Clerk and Polling Agent.


Meaning of Electoral Commission: An electoral commission is a politically independent and impartial body charged with the responsibility of conducting free and fair elections in a country. It is generally established by the constitution to guarantee autonomy. Their functions are stipulated in the constitution of the country. In Nigeria presently, it is called Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in 1979 it was called Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO).

Role or Duties of Electoral Commission

i.Organises and conducts free and fair elections in a country.

ii.Delimitation of the country into constituencies.

iii.Registration of political parties.

iv.Registration of eligible voters.

v.Screening of candidates.

vi.Appointments and training of electoral officers.

vii.Provision of adequate electoral materials to voters

viii.Counting of ballot papers.

ix.Announcement of election results.

x.Provisions of adequate security to voters.

xi.Education of the electorates.

xii.Witness on election issues.

xiii.Issuance of certificate of return to winners of elections.

Problems of Electoral Commission

There are problems facing electoral commission in Nigeria like other developing world.  Such problems include:

i.Political Interference: Since electoral body is always put in place by the government of the day, their independence might not be total because it has to dance to the tunes of its ‘boss’ because it is he who pays the piper that dictates the tune.  Some influential politicians many a times want to have their wishes carried out which is against the goal and rules of the establishment of the commission.

ii.Poor Communication Network: Communication networks are bad in some parts of the country which may affect the work of the commission especially when election is going on in different centres all over the state or country and they need to monitor. Besides, the facilities for effective communication might not be procured due to lack of funds.

iii.Lack of Adequate Funds: There are times when the government of the day will not be able to give adequate funds to meet the various needs of the commission and hence, their performances are affected.

iv.Lack of Modern Equipments:   A substantial part of the commission’s work is done manually. There are modern gadgets that would have made the work easier, faster and more accurate than they are now.

v.Partisan Activities of Electoral Officials: Electoral officers are sometimes biased. They aid and abet the manipulation of elections in favour of some candidates, thereby removing the confidence which citizens repose on them.

vi.Problem of Illiteracy: the low level of literacy constitutes a problem to the electoral commission. This is because some of the voters may not be able to vote intelligently and objectively.

vii.Electoral malpractices rampant among the political leaders and their associates always pose problems to the electoral officials because the corrupt politicians always hang on their necks.




1.What is electoral commission?

2.What are the functions of electoral commission in the electoral process?

3.What problems are likely to hinder the success of the commission in Nigeria?



The electoral commission in Nigeria is made up of

a.The National Electoral Commission Chairman: This is the head of the electoral commission charged with the conduct of free and fair election in the country. He oversees the conduct of elections in the states and local governments through the state residents’ electoral commissioners. The current electoral commission chairman in Nigeria is Professor Atahiru  Jega.

b.State Resident Electoral Commissioner: This is the head of the electoral commission at the state level. Each of the 36 states in Nigeria has a resident electoral commissioner.

c.Returning Officer: This is the officer responsible for the announcement of election results for each election. They are at the national, states and the local government levels.

d.Supervisors: These are the officers responsible for the supervision of the presiding officers at the polling centres.

e.Presiding Officer: This officer is responsible for controlling the polling centre or station.

f.Polling Clerks/Polling officer: They are responsible for checking the names of eligible voters in the voters register and record necessary details.

g.Polling Agents: They are the representatives of political parties and candidates at the voting centre.

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h.Security Officers: They are to maintain law and order at the voting centres.


History of electoral commission in Nigeria

i.1959: Electoral Commission of Nigeria (ECN) set up by: The Colonial Government.

ii.1960: Federal Electoral Commission (FEC) set up by: Tafawa Balewa Government with Late Eyo Ita as the Chairman.

iii.1978: Federal Electoral Commission (FEC) set up by General Olusegun Obasanjo with Chief Michael Ani as the Chairman.

iv.1978–83: Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO) as President Shehu Shagari chose Justice OVIE Whiskey as the Chairman.

v.1987: National Electoral Commission (NEC) set up by General Ibrahim Babangida with Prof. Eme Awa as the Chairman.

vi.1989: National Electoral Commission with Prof. Humphrey Nwosu as the Chairman.

vii.July 1993: National Electoral Commission (NEC) with Prof. Enya as the Chairman appointed by Chief Ernest Shonekan the head of the National Interim Government.

viii.November 1993: National Electoral Commission of Nigeria (NECN) as renamed by General Sanni Abacha with Chief Dagogo Jack as the Chairman.

ix.July 1998: Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as renamed by General Abdulsalam Abubakar with Ephraim Akpata and later Abel Guobadia as Chairman.

x.2003: Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) with Prof. Maurice Iwu as Chairman as appointed by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo.

xi.June 2010: Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) with Prof. Attahiru Jega as Chairman as appointed by President Goodluck Jonathan.




1.What is electoral commission?

2.What are the functions of electoral commission in the electoral process?


1.Define electoral commission?

2.State the functions of electoral commission in the electoral process?

3.What problems are likely to hinder the success of the commission in Nigeria?

4.Who is the current chairman of electoral commission in Nigeria?

5.Mention any four electoral officials.


  1. Which of the following is not the responsibility of an electoral commission?

(a) Creation of constituencies (b) Registration of voters (c) Nomination of candidates (d) Registration of political parties (e) Provision of polling booths

  1. Which of the following is a function of Electoral commission? (a) Arbitrating among political parties (b) Arranging and conducting elections (c) Organising political parties (d) Supporting political parties (e) Taking part in an election
  2. All but one of the following is organs of electoral commission in Nigeria?

(a) The Chairman (b) Resident Electoral Commissioner  (c) Returning officer (d) Supervisor (e) Party Chairman

  1. One of the major problems confronting electoral commission in Nigeria is…

(a) non – permanence of leadership (b) delay of officers’ promotion (c) lack of capable hand (d) political interference (e) too large population to handle

  1. The present electoral body in Nigeria is ……… (a) Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) (b) Federal Democratic Commission (FEDECO) (c) National Electoral Commission (NEC) (d) Federal Electoral Commission (e) Electoral Commission of Nigeria.


Read Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited. Pages 16–18.


Read about public opinion.




DATE: ………………….


CONTENT: (a) Definition and Formation of Public Opinion

(b) Measurement and the Importance of Public Opinion




Definition of Public Opinion: Public opinion can be defined as the general opinion that the majority of people in a community hold on a given public issue at a particular time. It refers to what members of the public think or feel about government proposed action or actions already taken by government.

The level of peoples’ interest in public opinion is mainly determined by their literacy level. This makes the level to be very low in developing countries as only few that have the understanding and know their rights express their views in public issues.

Consensus of opinion is when a large majority of the people hold the same view on any issue.

Formation of Public Opinion

i.Political Parties: Political parties try to understand the needs of the citizenry. They therefore build their programmes or manifestoes to address such needs. Such programmes or the communication of political leaders on them now constitute an organized presentation of public opinion on the issue. The political parties therefore educate the electorates on the possibilities of a better living and so direct public opinion toward such goals.

ii.Pressure Groups: The change in government policies and actions that pressure group demand may be particular to them or affecting the whole society. Whichever way, their activities and goals usually become reference point and helps in the formation of public opinion.

iii.Peer Groups: Members of similar age group can meet to discuss on any pressing national issue and therefore form an opinion among their members.

iv.Influential Personalities: Influential members of the society like Pastors, Imams, traditional rulers, etc. can also help to formulate public opinion through their comments and advice to the people and the government.

v.Mass Media: The mass media can take a stand on any public issue which can help the members of the public to form an opinion on certain issues of national importance.

vi.Government Agencies: Public opinion can also be formed through government enlightenment programme like National Orientation Agency especially in making the members of the public have a positive image of the government in power.

vii.Public Lectures: Public opinion can also be formed through organization of seminars, lectures to which certain people will be invited to talk in order to help people form an opinion.

viii.Family: This is the first place where the child can learn about the issues of the society. Public opinion can therefore be formed through family discussions.

ix.Religious Organization: Religious leaders can help to mould public opinion by discussing with members of their group and even pray for the country’s leaders.

x.International Organization: When a country belongs to an international organization, public opinion can be formed through the views held by the majority of members of that organization.

xi.Rumours and Gossips: Many citizens not well informed may form their opinions from common rumours and gossips.



1.Define public opinion.

  1. Explain four factors that can promote public opinion in a state.

3.Highlight how family can help in the formation of public opinion.



Measurement of Public Opinion

Public opinion can be measured through the following means:

i.Mass Media: As people express their minds in the mass media – newspapers,     magazines, radio, television, etc, the public opinion is determined.

ii.Public Hearing: Public opinion can be measured through opinions expressed in public hearing set up by the government on certain issues.

iii.Letters/Petitions: it can also be expressed through letters and petitions which people send to the government to express their minds.

iv.Face to Face Interaction: Public opinion can also be measured by the people meeting face to face with their political leaders.

v.Protest/Demonstration: People can demonstrate for or against the policies and programmes of the government.

vi.Opinion Polls: This can be arranged by mass media through interviews, surveys and questionnaires in order to bring out certain information about the government and the people. It is always measured in percentage.

vii.Referendum/Plebiscite: Public opinion can be measured through referendum or plebiscite where people vote ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to support or oppose government policy.

viii.Outcome of Election: The result of an election shows the weakness or strength of the government in power. Such election outcome will prove the popularity or otherwise of the government.

ix.Random Sampling: It can be measured through random sampling of opinions from various sections of the community through phone or live television or radio programmes.

x.Opinion Leaders: There are opinion leaders in the society who could speak on behalf of the people as their views are respected by the government.

Importance of Public Opinion

i.It helps in making the government moderate her actions or if possible reverse some actions that may help to pull down the government.

ii.It brings about the formulation of programmes and policies that will be to the best interest of majority of the people.

iii.It wakes up government and its agents from slumber.

iv.In election period, it helps government to ascertain its popularity and whether it can win or lose election.

v.It serves as avenue through which public views are channeled to the government.

vi.Opinion polls provide valuable information about those contesting elections.

vii.It directs the government in knowing what the public thinks about its policies and actions.

viii.It helps the government to know the needs and the aspirations of the citizens.

ix.Opinion polls help the voters to cast their votes for popular candidates.

x.It helps to check the excesses of the government especially where majority of the people are literates and are interested in expressing their opinions through different available means.


1.Define opinion poll.

2.Write out five factors that make the conduct of public opinion unreliable in West Africa.

3.List five importance of opinion poll.


1.Define public opinion.

2.Explain four factors that can promote public opinion in a state.

3.Highlight how family can help in the formation of public opinion.

4.Define opinion poll.

5.Write out five factors that make the conduct of public opinion unreliable in West Africa.

6.List five importance of opinion poll.


1.Public opinion can be expressed through …. (a) census (b) general strike (c) socialization (d) compromise

2.Public opinion helps the government to ……. (a) control the public (b) find out what the public think about its activities (c) influence the public (d) suppress its opponent.

3.Public opinion is the view held by the ….. (a) minority (b) civil servants (c) majority (d) politicians

  1. Which of the following people cannot influence the opinion of the people? (a) Lunatics (b) Civil servants (c) Religious leaders (d) Politician
  2.  One of the effects of outcome of opinion polls upon politicians is that…  (a) it makes them win another election (b) it makes them to measure their popularity among the people (c) it leads to the formation of more political parties (d) it qualifies them for primaries.


Read Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited. Pages 19–23.


Read about mass media: Types and roles.






DATE:     ………………….


CONTENT (a) Meaning, Roles, and Impact

(b) Watchdog role.

Sub-Topic 1: MASS MEDIA

Meaning: Mass media can be defined as the media used for addressing or communicating with the masses. It is anything that serves as the source for communicating to and among a large audience at the same time.

Mass media consists of the various means by which information reaches large number of people, such as television, radio, movies, newspapers and the internet.


i.Publishing media (books, newspapers, magazines etc): These types of media are the oldest form of mass media. The first book in the world was believed to be printed in 863AD in China.

ii.Broadcasting – Radio and television: The first commercial broadcast in the United State began in the 1920s. The first television broadcast for a mass audience began in 1936 in Germany and UK. Regular mass TV broadcasts in the United State began only in 1948.

iii.Electronic media: The electronic media is the new age media that includes the computers, mobile phones, internets, iPods, CD players, tape recorders, etc. The electronic media is what our world resolves round today. Internet is the media that connects the entire globe. Through E-mail you can get connected to someone in another part of the world in just few seconds.

iv.Mobile phones were first introduced in 1979 in Japan. They were not popular among the masses until mid 90s.

Cassette players, which have now been renovated into iPods and CD players, are important invention.

Computer has turned the electronic around and has changed the faces of modern technology. Without computer internet would have been impossible.


Mass media are useful in many areas including the following:

1.Information: The mass media is an avenue through which information can be passed to many people at the same time covering a long distance. Information is a coin of two sides – sending and receiving. One can send and receive information through the mass media.

2.Role as an agent of influencing public opinions: Newspapers, magazines, radio and television, internet, mobile phones, etc has helped tremendously in educating people to know the activity of government and the policies that were not in the interest of the people. For example, newspapers were one of the tools used against the colonial masters to attain independence.

3.Advocacy for business and social concern: This includes advertising, marketing, propaganda, public relation, political communication.

4.Entertainment: Since the late 20th century, through video and computer games the mass media has been the source of entertainment.

5.Public service announcements: Mass Media – Radio and television in particular have been used by the government to reach out to people in terms of news, announcement and entertainment. Programmes that are educating are on radio and television to make the masses get familiar with what is going on around them. Today radio and television are so common that an average man can afford it.


Generally, products of science and technology posed both good and evil on the society. Mass media plays both positive and negative roles in the lives of the masses.


i.Promotion of education: Mass media can be used for educational purposes in an effective manner. They promote education through lessons given on specific subjects as well as coverage of some competitions on specific subjects. They also educate people on what is going on in the society.

ii.Mass media is the fastest means of communication which has made the accessibility of information very fast.

iii.Agent of change: The mass media are seen as agent of change in that they look for the ways of making life better and comfortable for the people. They put pressure on the government to bring the much needed change for the people.

iv.Political impact: The mass media also made positive role in the past in promoting political development such as their role in installing credible government in power as well as giving political education to the electorates.

v.Economic role: The mass media also helps to promote trade and industrial growth through advertisement of products as well as promoting international trade. There are columns devoted for financial matters such as stock exchange, banking news, job advertisement, etc.

vi.Projecting positive image of government: The mass media also helps to project government image by bringing the activities of the government to the attention of the people in order to arouse public support for the government.

vii.Information network: Most of the news and things going on in the world is got through the press as they inform the members of the public on what is going on in the society.

viii.Watchdog role: The press is the watchdog of government in checking misuse of powers by the organs of government with a view of checking the excesses of government.

ix.Promotion of sports and culture: The press also promotes local and international sports as well as promoting culture and tourism in our society.

x.Giving of necessary advice to government: the press also helps in giving necessary advice to the government through their editorial comments.

xi.World affairs: They also bring countries of the world together as they inform us of happenings in other parts of the world.



Negative/Disadvantages of Mass Media

  1. Mass media sometimes pass information that cannot be verified. Such information given might not be true. This lead to misinformation

ii.News can be manipulated to influence the minds of the audience. For example, a particular political party may manipulate report in its favour, which would indicate its political control in the media.

iii.Media bias can occur due to various issues.

iv.Wrong interpretation of news may create further unrest in any place or even violence in case of extreme situation.



1.What do you understand by the term Mass Media?

2.Mention five media outfits in Nigeria.


This is the role played by the press in monitoring the activities of the organs of the government with a view of checking the excesses and unconstitutional acts of government. The press is a specialized interest group in Nigeria. As the fourth estate or the “societal watchdog,” it is the most vocal and effective interest group in the country, especially because other interest groups channeled their demands and support through the press. The media could act as a watchdog because of the large number of newspapers, radio and television stations, and because of the wide degree of press freedom.

The following are the ways the mass media can perform the watchdog roles.

1)Investigative journalism: The mass media can investigate some actions of government and bring their findings to the attention of the public.

2)Public criticisms: They can also criticize some negative actions of government that may have negative impact on the people as well as some constitutional breaches.

3)Watchdog on corporations and businesses: The mass media can perform their watchdog role by paying special attention to specific areas or focus on the activities of a particular corporation.

4)Political watch: they also set the watch on political events in the country like monitoring the activities of the political parties, the actions of the electoral commission and conduct of the elections and they make their findings known to the members of the public.

5)Economic and Financial Management: It is one of the watchdog roles of the press to check financial mismanagement of the public fund by those at the corridors of power by bringing such information to the attention of the public.

6)The General Public Good: They monitor government, businesses, the environment and any other area where public interest is threatened.

7)Watchdog on Rights: Any violation of fundamental human rights can be investigated and checked by the mass media in order to secure the rights of the oppressed in the society.


1.Explain the word watchdog by mass media.

2.Mention five specific areas through which the media can perform the watchdog roles.

3.Explain any two of the points mentioned above.


1)What do you understand by the term mass media?

2)Mention five media outfits in Nigeria.

3)Explain the watchdog role of the mass media.

4)What are the functions of the mass media?

5)What are the challenges facing the media houses in Nigeria?

6) Mention five specific areas through which the media can perform the watchdog roles.


1.Mass media refers to __________ a) all gadget used in political gathering b) Means of mass communication c) audio without printed media d) Electronic media only

2.Watch of what is likely to happen in the society is known as ____________ a) public discussion b) socialization c) education d) surveillance

3.Printed media include __________ a) television and radio b) cell phone and land phone c) newspaper, magazine and journals d) microphones and speakers

4.One of the negative effect of mass media is that___________________ a) it exposes youths to pornography b)  it disseminate information too fast c) too many people are enjoying it d) the government is making money from it

5.The most common electronic media today is _____________ a) internet b) radio c) satellite d) computer.


  1. What do you understand by the term mass media?
  2. Mention five specific areas through which the media can perform the watchdog roles.


Read Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited. Pages 24-29.


Read about meaning and characteristics of civil service.







DATE: ………………….


CONTENT: (a) Meaning of civil service.

(b) Characteristics of the civil service.

(c) Functions of the civil service.

(d) Structure of the civil service–(i) Administrative/professional (ii) Executive (iii) Clerical etc.

(e) Honesty Integrity.


The civil service is the administrative area of the executive organ of government responsible for formulation and execution of government policies.

The civil service and its workers known as civil servants perform purely administrative and executive functions which entail formulating and implementing government policies. The departments in civil service are ministries headed by ministers or commissioners who serve as both the political and executive heads. The armed forces, the police public corporations and governmental owned companies are not included in the service but are collectively called public service and their workers including the civil servants are called the public servants. In Nigeria, there are federal and state civil services, with each state in Nigeria having its own.

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1)Permanence: The civil service is essentially a permanent government institution that does not change with the government that creates it. Its workers also enjoy secure appointments.

2)Neutrality: The civil service and its workers (the civil servants) are politically neutral. They are not expected to participate in partisan politics unless they resign their appointment.

3)Anonymity: The civil servants are anonymous. They are therefore seen but do not speak to the press or disclose official secrets unless the minister authorized them to do so. They are not held responsible for any of their actions as it affects the government. Only the ministers and commissioners are answerable for the actions of the civil service.

4)Impartiality: The civil service and the civil servants are expected to serve any government or political party in power without fear or favour, without allowing their political interest beclouds their faithfulness.

5)Expertise: The civil servants are expected to be experts in the functions they perform. They therefore suppose to have a good measure of knowledge and intelligence.

6)Merit/Achievement: Recruitment into the civil service should be based on merit not on quota or favouritism for them to perform their functions very well and ensure the success of the government. The promotion in civil service is based on achievement.

7)Bureaucracy/Red-Tapism: In the civil service, there are rules and regulations which are followed strictly. The rules and regulations are contained in the “General Order” (G.O.) and financial regulation of the civil service.


1)Formulations of policies: The senior administrative and technical civil servants help to formulate the policies and programmes of the government. These are presented to the ministers and commissioners for consideration and final decisions.

2)Drafting of bills: Experts in the civil service especially the lawyers; assist the government in the drafting of bills which eventually becomes law.

3)Advice to the Minister/Commissioners: The top civil servants act as advisers to the ministers and commissioners in charge of their ministries. Their relevant expertise and experience afford them the opportunities of providing dependable guide and information on complex government policies and programmes. They also help the political appointees to furnish the legislature with relevant information requested on their ministries.

4)Implementation of Government Policies: The top civil servants coordinate and supervise their subordinates to ensure the smooth execution of the policies and the programmes of the government; this ensures the provision of amenities to improve the health, educational, social, economical and general life of their people.

5)Preparation of Annual Estimates and Budgets: The civil servants draft and prepare the annual budget estimate of government ministries, department and corporations.

6)Keeping of Government Records and Properties: Civil servants gather and supplies useful information on which government policies and programmes are based. They keep such information or other records for day-to-day and future use. They also keep and preserve government properties.

7)Collection of Revenue: The civil service assists the government to generate funds through the collection of taxes paid by the citizens and corporate organizations, fines from the courts and duties paid by exporters and importers. This revenue enables the government achieve its goals and objectives.

8)Law Making: The civil service makes byelaws, regulations and orders under power granted it by the parliament.

9)Quasi-Judicial Functions: The civil service performs some quasi-judicial functions such as the arrest and prosecution of smugglers (by custom officials). Public health and rent control officers often inspect residential and commercial houses to ascertain their level of cleanliness and curb any exorbitant rent demand by landlords.

10)Public Enlightenments: The civil service helps to explain government policies to the public. They can carry out public enlightenment programme especially through the mass media to enable the people to appreciate the government policies and programmes, and the problems facing the government.



1.What is Civil Service?

2.Write any four characteristics of Civil Service.

3.What are the functions of Civil Service?


Civil servants could be grouped into the following:

1.Administrative class: This comprises of the most senior civil servants who organize and coordinate the activities of the ministries. They execute high level of administrative work, advise ministers in the formation and implementation of policies, and serve as communication link between the ministers and the other civil servants. Recruitment to this class is based on university education and very competitive written examinations and interviews conducted by the civil service commission. In this class are directors-general, other directors, deputy directors, assistant directors, etc.

2.Executive class: The executive class implements the general policies and programmes of the government on a daily basis. They supervise and control the activities of their subordinates and help to collect facts that aid in making policy and decisions. The class comprises executive officers, senior executive officers and senior technical officers who are recruited after possessing professional diploma and certificate as well as G.C.E, A’ level or its equivalent.

3.The Professional Class: These classes of officers are recruited as a result of their specialized training, skills, scientific and technical knowledge. The professional classes include lawyers, medical doctors, engineers, architects, accountants and teachers. They offer professional advice on the technical policies of the government and supervise sensitive projects undertaken by the government. Recruitment into this class is based on professional or university qualifications.

4.The Clerical Class: The class of workers in this class include typist, clerical officers, clerical assistants and secretaries, who help staff in the other classes to carry out their functions. Their job involves keeping of records, movement of files, preparation of data and vouchers and payment of claims. They are holders of Secondary Schools Certificates and G.C.E, O level or equivalent professional certificate, e.g. in typing.

5.The Auxiliary/Messengerial Class: The categories of workers in this class include cleaners, drivers, painters, messengers, porters and gardeners. This work involves manual labour, which the entry qualification is the First School Leaving Certificate.

HONESTY: Honesty refers to the human quality of saying the truth and acting truthfully in fairness and sincerity. Honesty does not involve cheating, deceit or telling lies, stealing or dealing in craftiness. It is a disposition of always communicating the truth with all sincerity, openness, equity, fairness in every situation whether in verbal and non-verbal communication.

Attributes or qualities of honesty include the following:

(i)Sincerity (ii) Trust-worthiness (iii) Truthfulness (iv) Responsibility  (v) Good Character (vi) Integrity (vi) Fairness

The benefits of honesty include the following:

i.Helps to form bonds in human relationship.

ii.Helps to build a just and egalitarian society; where stealing, cheating, lying and all forms of corruption are frowned at and condemned without fear or favour.

iii.Guarantees rapid development because honesty or righteousness exalts a nation.

iv.Prevents fraudulent practices such as inflating costs of contract, public funds embezzlement, money laundering, falsification of records and figures in order to steal or mis-appropriate public funds.

v.Makes students to study well to pass examinations with flying colours and prevents them from engaging in examinations malpractice.

vi.Enables things to work out well and fast. It helps to identify and solve problems in a straightforward way to avoid wastefulness.

vii.Makes a man or a woman to be an honourable person in the society.

viii.Attracts good people to a person. It makes people to want to do business with an individual and relate well with him.

ix.Attracts respect and accord dignity to an individual.

x.Leads to promotion and awards.

xi.Bestows peace and harmony to the society and country.


Meaning of Integrity: Integrity is the quality of being honest and morally upright.  It is the ability to do what is right in spite of all odds.


1.Probity and honesty:  A man of integrity must be honest and accountable for whatever task that is given to him

  1. Non-compromise of principle:  A man of integrity would never compromise whatever stand he is taking no matter the situation or the people involved
  2. Truthfulness: A man of integrity will always stand by the truth at all times.

4.Contentment: He must be contented with whatever he has or in any  situation he finds himself

  1.  Fair play: He or she is always fair when dealing with other people.
  2.  A role model: Finally, a man of integrity should also be a role model which other people in   the society can emulate.



1.Discuss briefly the structure and organization of the civil service.

2.What is honesty?

3.What is the importance of honesty and integrity in a civil servant?


1)What is civil service?

2)Discuss briefly the structure and organization of the civil service.

3)What are the main functions of the civil service commission?

4)Explain the following basic concepts  underlying the civil service system:




5)Who is a civil servant?



1.All the following are features of the civil services except_____________ a) anonymity b) political neutrality and impartiality c) security of tenure and permanence d) political maturity and participation.

2.Who among the following is a civil servant in Nigeria? a) The managing director of a bank b) A director in the ministry of defense c) A major in the army d) A pilot with the Nigerian airways.

3.Neutrality of civil servant implies that they should ____________ a) belong to political parties of their choice. b) recruitment on the basis of merit. c) serve any government loyally. d) be appointed on permanent basis.

4.Red tapism in the civil service refers to_________ a) the use of red tapes on legal documents b) slowness of action. c) the cooperation between civil servant and politicians. d) politicization of the civil service

5.The anonymity of a civil servant means that he___________ a) receives neither praise nor blame publicly. b) is above the law of the land. c) should not take part in union activities d) should not be disciplined because of his expertise.





DATE: ………………….


CONTENT: (a) Meaning of Civil Service Commission.

(b) Functions of the Civil Service Commission.

(c) Relationship between the Civil Service and Political Executives.


The Civil Service Commission is a body independent of the civil service itself, established by the government to administer the civil service. The commission is insulated from partisan politics and is made up of a full time chairman, some full-time and some part-time commissioners. The chairman of the federal civil service commission is appointed by the president, while that of the state is appointed by the governor. Members should be people of proven integrity and good education.


i.Recruitment of highly qualified personnel into the civil service, bases upon good educational qualifications and performance in competitive written examination and interviews.

ii.The civil service commission promotes competent and productive senior civil servants from one grade to another.

iii.It can transfer civil servants from one department to another.

iv.The commission has disciplinary power, like supervision or dismissal of erring civil servants.

v.It is rested with the power of retiring civil servant and advising in the payment of their pension entitlements and allowances.

vi.It offers advice to the government on the appointment of suitable individuals to fill some sensitive position in public corporations or parastatals




1.What is Civil Service Commission?

2.Identify any four major functions of Civil/Public Service Commission.



1.Constitutionally, civil servants are employee of the ministry under the general supervisor of a political head or minister. They are required by law to carry out the directives of the supervising minister, irrespective of their opinions about policy.

2.Senior civil servants wield enormous influence on the minister during the process of policy planning and execution. The minister depends on the experience and expertise of these top civil servants during the process of formulating policies for the government. This is because the minister or commissioner, being political appointee may not be expert in matters concerning their ministry, whereas the senior civil servants, apart from being specialists, have acquired years of experience in the ministry.

3.Civil servant makes a greater contribution to the public policy where the minister is prepared to be guided by their advice. Where however, the minister has a definite programme of his to implement, the contribution of civil servants are reduced.


1.Mention two forms of relationship that exist between the civil servants and political executives.


1.What are the major differences between the Civil Service and Public Service?

2.Discuss the main criticisms against Nigerian Civil Service.

3.Identify the characteristics of the Civil Service.

4.Why is it important for the Civil Service to be politically neutral?

5.In what five ways is the Civil Service different from the public corporations?

6.State five functions of a modern Civil Service.


1.The main duties of the Civil Service Commission under Nigeria republic constitution was______________ a) the retirement and settlement of pension for federal civil servants b) the recruitment discipline and promotion of civil servant. c) the appointment and promotion of judges. d) advising the government on the establishment of new ministries.

2.Civil servants are recruited, controlled, promoted and disciplined by the ______________. a) teaching service commission b) public complaint commission c) public service commission c) code of conduct bureau.

3.The levels where we have civil service commission in Nigeria are …. (a) state and local government levels (b) federal and state levels (c) Federal and local government (d)  federal level only

4.The chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission is appointed by  the (a) police (b) president (c) state governor (d) FCT minister

  1. Civil service commission is insulated from partisan politics to (a)  avoid being promoted (b) favour the government of the day (c)  protect its neutrality (d)  be appointed as minister


1.What is Civil Service Commission?

2.Identify any four major functions of Civil/Public Service Commission

READING ASSIGNMENT: Read Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited. Pages 31-36.

PRE-READING ASSIGNMENT: Read your e-learning notes and text books that cover all you have been taught in preparation for terminal examination.





DATE: ………………….


CONTENTS: (1) Meaning – (a) Definition.

(b) Reasons for setting public corporations.

(c) Functions of public corporations.

(d) Examples of public corporations.



Definition of public corporations

Public corporations are government owned establishments and enterprises established through the acts of parliament or statutes, decrees or edicts to provide essential social and welfare services to the people. Public corporations are owned by the government but managed by board of directors appointed by the government.

Types of public corporations

There are two main types of public corporations:

1.Those providing essential services like water corporations, Power Holding Company of Nigeria, Federal Housing Authority and Nigeria Ports Plc.

2.Those of commercial nature like state owned banks, hotels, textile mills, insurance companies and transport services.


1.What are public corporations?

2.Highlight the two types of public corporations.


1.The Nature of their Services: Government prefers to handle the rendering of these essential services in order to reduce their costs.

2.Capital Involvement: the huge amount of capital involved may never be afforded by individuals, hence, government involvement.

3.Prevention of Exploitation: if private enterprises are allowed to render the essential services, there will be exploitation.

4.To raise the standard of living of the people: regular provision of these essential services will help to raise the standard of living of the people.

5.To ensure constant supply: if these services are left in the hands of private enterprises, there will be irregular supply.

6.To avoid private monopoly: private monopoly in the provision of essential services is detrimental to members of the public

7.Employment opportunities: government establishes and owns public corporations in order to provide employment opportunities to the citizens of the country.

8.For rapid economic development: their presence attracts both local and foreign investors and speeds up the economic development of the country.

9.For security reasons: government of a country establishes and owns public corporations like airports, seaports, etc. in order to keep eagle eye on them to know who and what comes in and out of a country.


  1. Mention eight reasons for setting public corporations.

2.Explain two out of the reasons mentioned.


Functions of public corporations

The functions of public corporations include the following:

1.They provide services at prices which are affordable by the general public.

2.They protect the security of the nation by preventing private participation in certain sensitive areas.

3.Public corporations provide employment opportunities and prerequisite skills for the people.

4.Public corporation provides revenue for the government.

5.They also serve as media for national integration and for the promotion of national interest.

6.They provide some essential public utilities, social amenities and welfare services that private individual may not be able to provide.

7.They sometimes prevent undesirable private business enterprises from exploiting the people.

Examples of public corporations

The following are some of the examples of public corporations:

1.Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN)

2.Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC)

3.State Water Corporations

4.State Transport Corporation

5.State Owned Banks

6.Nigerian Ports Plc

7.Nigerian  National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)


1.State six functions of public corporations

2.Give four examples of public corporations.


1.Explain public corporation.

2.Highlight five reasons for setting up public corporation.

3.Outline five functions of public corporation.

4.Provide five examples of public corporation.

5.Explain the two types of public corporation.


Objective Test

1.Public corporations are set up by (a) a minister (b) a director (c) a permanent secretary (d) an act of parliament.

2.Which of the following is true of a Public Corporation? It is (a) established by a bye-law (b) owned by minister of finance (c) set up to make profit for share holders (d) set up to provide essential services.

3.One of the objectives of public corporations is to (a) enhance public awareness (b) narrow the gap between the rich and the poor (c) encourage individual participation (d) maximize profit.

4.Which of the following is not a public corporation? (a) The Nigeria Steel Development Authority (b) The National Electric Power Authority (c) The Nigeria Ports Authority (d) The Nigeria Teachers Institute.


1.Define public corporation.

2.Give five reasons for setting up a public corporation in your country.


Read from Melrose Government SS 2, by R.E Aiyede et al. Pages 42-44


Read the structure and organization of public corporation



WEEK 12: Terminal Examination.


1.Round–Up Government for Senior School Certificate, UME and PCE Examinations by Ibiyemi Oyeneye, et al (2011); Longman Nigeria Limited.

2.Government for Senior Secondary Schools Book 2 by R.E. Aiyede et al (2012); Melrose Nigeria Limited.

  1. Exam Focus Government for WASSCE and SSCE (New Impression) by A. Gboyega et al (2013); University Press Plc.

4.New  Approach Government  by Oyeleye Oyediran et al (2011)

5.Essential government for Senior Secondary Schools by Dibie C. Chris (2008). Tonad Publishers Limited.

6.Comprehensive Government for Senior Secondary Schools by Johnson Ugorji Anyaele (2003) A. Johnson Publishers Limited.


Hope you got what you visited this page for? The above is the lesson note for Government for SS2 class. However, you can download the free PDF file for record purposes.

If you have any questions as regards Government lesson note For SS2 class, kindly send them to us via the comment section below and we shall respond accordingly as usual.



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