n African Renaissance - Reflections on citizen diplomacy and political legitimacy in Nigeria, 2007 - present

Volume 6 Number 3-4
  • ISSN : 1744-2532
  • E-ISSN: 2516-5305


The word legitimacy is often interpreted in a normative or positive way. In a normative sense, legitimacy gets greater attention as part of moral philosophy. A status conferred by the people on government officials, acts, and institution through their belief that the government's actions reflect an appropriate use of power by a legally constituted governmental authority following correct decisions on making policies.

The idea of political legitimacy implies that the individual, in some sense, sees the decisions made by the state (or another relevant political body) as expressions of her own will. That is, in some sense they express concerns shared by her, even in the case where specific decisions go against her personal views... In such a situation, political decisions made by the collective are articulations of concerns shared by the individual citizen, and her sense of political obligation is an expression of this sense of community - rather than simply the acceptance of decisions imposed on her from the outside.

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