Home Political News DICTATORSHIP: What constitutes to dictatorship you can’t ignore

DICTATORSHIP: What constitutes to dictatorship you can’t ignore


Dictatorship is an authoritarian system of government whereby a sole person or group of people rule the country and have no tolerance for any form of challenge to their rule or power.

The rulers generally don’t permit the existence of independent media or judiciary and act without consulting anybody or authority. Dictatorships and democracies emerged as the most dominant systems of the 19th and 20th centuries gradually pushing aside the monarchy which was the dominant form of government at the time.

Dictators usually use their strong personalities and suppress the rights and freedoms of the masses in order to remain political heads of their countries. Dictators usually use propaganda to shore up their support and reduce the influence of proponents of other forms of government.


According to Barbara Gibbes, dictatorship can be classified into five forms and they are:

Military Dictatorships

This is a form of dictatorship where a group of military officers hold power in a country and determine who leads the country and determines the policies to take. High ranking elites are mostly the leaders of a dictatorial regime. Members of a military regime elites who rule the country are referred to as `JUNTA`. They are mostly senior officers and other high ranking members in the military. Examples of states in military regimes include Sudan and Bolivia.

Single Party Dictatorships

 This is a regime in which one party is dominant in the country’s politics. A single party usually has control of political posts and policies. Elites of the ruling party are usually called the `Politburo`, `Central committee` or `Secretariat`. These powerful individuals have control over the selection of party officers and organize benefit programmers to shore up their support for votes in times of elections. Examples of such states include China, Cuba, Eritrea, Vietnam, Democratic People`s Republic of Korea.

Personalist Dictatorships

This is a form of dictatorship where an individual has absolute power in the country and does anything without any forms of checks on him/ her. Elite corps in personalist dictatorships are usually made up of close friends and family of the dictator. They are handpicked to do the lapped work of the dictator. Russia, Venezuela, Turkey, and the Philippines are examples.

Monarchic Dictatorships

This form of dictatorship usually has a person of royal ancestry or descent who has inherited his position as head of the country due to the constitution. If the monarch`s role is largely ceremonial, it is not considered a dictatorship but countries, where absolute monarchs exist like Saudi Arabia, can be called hereditary dictatorships. Real power has to be exercised by the monarch in order for them to termed as such. Monarchical elites are usually members of the royal family.

Hybrid Dictatorships

Hybrid dictatorships blend the features of single party, military and personalist dictatorships. When the ruling regime possesses all forms of the three dictatorships, they are called triple threat. The most common forms are personalist/ military hybrids and personalist/ single party hybrids. Tunisia, Malaysia, Russia, Tanzania, Mexico and Serbia are few examples.


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