What Is Legitimacy? Definition, Meaning, Factors And Features

Table Of Contents
1. Meaning Of Legitimacy
2. Factors That Determine Legitimacy
3. Features Of Legitimacy
4. Advantages Of Running A Legitimate Governments
Meaning Of Legitimacy
Legitimacy is derived from a latin word legitimate meaning “lawful or according to law”. It means the acceptance of political system and being with laws of the land. It also refers to recognised authority and support governments by its citizens and other government e.g an elected government is legitimate while military is not legitimate.
Factors That Determine Legitimacy
The following are the factors that determine legitimacy:
1. Popular Participation: For a political system to be legitimate, the various interest group such as the pressure group etc must be allowed to take part. This gives the system the required acceptance by the populace.
2. Popular Support: The government must receive the popular support of the citizens before it becomes legitimate in a democratic system. The party that receives the greatest support in election forms the legitimate government.
3. Good Government: This accord legitimacy especially government that meets up their expectation of good government.
4. Foreign Diplomacy: The foreign policies adopted by the government of a country determine the legitimacy of other state will, according to such government.
Features Of Legitimacy
1. Written Law: The ability of government to work in accordance with the provision of the constitution helps to determine legitimacy.
2. Traditions And Customs Of The People: Respect for the existing customs of a given lands ensures legitimacy.
3. Quality Leadership: Quality discharge of the duties of a leader helps to sustain legitimacy.
4. Foreign Policy: The level of policies limited by a country determine its acceptance by other countries.
5. Political Participation: When government involves must sections of the people in governance through appointment, legitimacy is sustained.
Advantages Of Running A Legitimate Governments
1. Legitimacy encourages political stability in a state when the citizen see their government as a legitimate body, majority will voluntarily obey his law. This reduce disobedience to the laws of the states.
2. Strikes and violent demonstration will be less (non-existent).
3. The use of coercion (force) by the government to control the populace will seize and the government will strive to protect the rights of the citizens and provides more essential service in the state.