Dr. Emad Salah Al-Sheikh Daoud / researcher in public policies.
The opposition, in its simple sense, is defined as the largest party, or coalition of parties that have not been able to form a government, and the opposition is sometimes called an “alternative government”, and it has a range of responsibilities in Parliament, including closely examining the work of the parliamentary majority government. With the formation of the opposition in the Council of Representatives, however, ((in the two-chamber system, there is a leader of the opposition in the upper chamber, who is also called the leader of the opposition)). The opposition may or may not occupy a majority of the seats in that chamber.
Opposition responsibilities include:
- Scrutiny and careful examination of the work of the government.
- Demanding the government explain its actions.
- Discussing bills and proposals for laws in Parliament.
- Work in committees that study draft laws and important national issues.
- Providing alternatives to the government (politics), as the Irish politician “Jim Higgins” sees that while the opposition is seen as obstructing government policies. However, this does not mean at all that it does not agree with the government on certain issues and work together to solve them. This makes one of the opposition’s most difficult roles lie between obstructing government policies and highlighting its shortcomings in public debate. This strengthens the work of the democratic government by increasing the transparency of government work, giving the citizen a clear vision of what the government is doing, and providing an alternative that listens to the voice of the citizen who is marginalized by the government on this one hand. And between supporting government policies agreed upon by the opposition, on the other hand.
It gives the citizen a good image of the opposition parties, and their message that may help them win the upcoming elections; Because a democracy without a good choice of the various ruling parties is not a democracy that runs on a balanced and efficient tone.
According to the opinion of Professor Dr. Hafez Alwan, the political opposition in the sense of (organic), or (formal) are the bodies that monitor the government, criticize it, and are ready to replace it, as it is said in this sense that the opposition assumed power after the election. As for political opposition, in its material (objective) meaning, it is the activity represented by government control, criticism, and willingness to replace it. Every citizen is told the right to oppose the government’s policy, and the citizen exercises this opposition by several means, the most important of which are political parties and pressure groups.
According to parliamentary custom, the leader of the opposition is a member of the Council of Representatives, and some members of the opposition are chosen as shadow ministers (as in the British political system) by the leader of the opposition; to be responsible for examining the work of the actual ministers; For example, The Shadow Secretary of Foreign Affairs closely examines the actual work of the Secretary of State, the opposition leader and his ministers from the shadow government’s lead in opposition decision-making, and members meet regularly to develop opposition policies.