Advantages of a Bicameral System

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QUESTION 3

Describe any four advantages of a bicameral system. ( 10 marks )

The system of bicameral legislature is defended on many grounds. Firstly, the popularly elected first house may be overhasty and they need checking by a less impulsive and more experience body. The second house works as a check on the hasty, rush, and ill consider legislation. In passing a law the first house may not have adequate time to consider the bill in detail, or it could be passed along the party lines. The second chamber stands against this potential danger. It reviews the bill thoroughly and if necessary it could send it to the first house of reconsideration. The country is saved from hasty legislation or party dictatorship.

Secondly is, the second chamber is essential to the security of freedom. A single chamber could be despotic. Once Lord Bryce pointed out, “ the necessity of two chambers is based on that belief that innate tendency of an assembly is to become hateful, tyrannical, and corrupt which need to be checked by the co – existence of another house of equal authority”. Otherwise, the life and liberty of the people will be jeopardised. The existence of a second house is a guarantee of freedom and a safeguard against the despotism of one house.

Thirdly, it is true that the second chamber interposes some delay by adding another step to the process of passing a bill. However this imposition of delay could be a blessing because it provides a chance for the public to discuss a problem and to formulate their opinion on it. In fact, it is of considerable advantages that the decision of the popularly elected house should be given a second thought. This time gap, educates public opinion and make the government susceptible to public reaction.

Last but not list, the system of bicameral legislature is the correct barometer of public opinion. Prior to the expiry of its term, a single chamber may grow out of tune and not keep...
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