Virtual Kollage: The functions of the Legislature

Posted by / Monday, 21 November 2016 / No comments

The functions of the Legislature



THE LEGISLATURE
The legislature can be defined as that arm of government that has been charged with the responsibility to make laws for the state and to amend such laws when the need arises for such amendments

FUNCTIONS OF THE LEGISLATURE
Law making
One of the functions of the legislature is to make laws for the nation. The laws are very important because they are used in regulating the conduct of the citizens of the state.

Amend laws
Another function of the legislature is to amend the laws of the land. In the course of operating a constitution, it may be realized that some of the provisions of the law are no longer relevant to the needs of the country. Under such a circumstance, the legislature has the power to amend the relevant clauses or entire laws to suit the current condition.

Approve annual budget
The constitution provides that before any taxes are raised and spent, the legislature must give its approval. So another function of the legislature is discuss the annual budget of the state and give approval or to reject it.

Outlet for grievances
The members of the legislature are representatives of the people and are therefore expected to bring up issues that are of importance to their constituents. Where the citizens have any problem, they bring to the attention of their Member of Parliament to be discussed on the floor of the house.

Discuss national issues
Another function of the legislature is to discuss issues that of national interest. The outbreak of an epidemic can be discussed on the floor of the house for example. This is done with the view to carving out solutions especially if it borders on legislation.

Judicial functions
Until recently, the Upper House in Britain also served as the Supreme Court of the land. In the United States, the legislature is used in trying the President of the land, especially in cases of impeachment. In Ghana recently, the Parliament was called back from recess in what was rumoured to be a precursor to the impeachment of the President of the land.

Electoral functions
Some legislatures also serve as electoral colleges to elect other officials of government. Under the 1969 constitution of Ghana, the Parliament acted as an electoral college to elect the ceremonial President of the state in the person of William Akuffo Addo.

SAMPLE QUESTIONS
1. Highlight six functions of the legislature. 

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