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Why Do We Need A Constitution?

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Why Do We Need A Constitution? - Lesson Summary

The white oppressors and the black majority of South Africa together formed a constitution. This was not an easy task as the black majority wanted to safeguard their interests and wanted substantial social and economic rights while the white minority wanted to protect its privileges and property. The blacks and the whites reached a compromise where they took care of the demands and requirements of both parties and everyone involved.

The rules would not be changed by the subsequent governments or people. This set of basic rules is called a constitution. A constitution is a supreme law accepted by all people of a country. Every country regardless of being a democracy or a non-democracy has a constitution. Besides being the supreme law, a constitution also determines the relationship between people and the government.

A constitution has the following functions:
  • It generates trust that is necessary for different kinds of people to live together.
  • It specifies how the government will be constituted which means who will have the power and what decisions will they be responsible for.
  • It lays down limitations on the powers of the government and makes the citizens aware of their rights.
  • It expresses the aspirations of people for building a good society.


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