The division of powers is a form of organizational structure of the states based on the distribution of the powers of decision and control in three areas: the legislative, the executive and the judicial.
Although the concept of division of powers has historical antecedents linked to the rise of democracies, it is the theory of the division of powers of Montesquieu that summarizes and defines it in the eighteenth century.
Commonly this division is situated as a measure or tool to defend freedoms in different nations. This happens because the accumulation of powers or competences under the same subjects is associated with more totalitarian state models such as dictatorships .
Historical phenomena such as the Industrial Revolution and the development of a new citizenship with the predominant role of the bourgeoisie in power with the fall of the old regime. Therefore its meaning is closely linked to the concept of democracy.
Main objective of the division of powers
Through the distribution of governmental responsibilities, mutual control between the corresponding leaders is made possible. That is, if a sociopolitical system goes bankrupt in one of its aspects or areas, the other “legs” should have the strength or legal support to address their misconduct.
For example, the judiciary must be responsible for the detection and punishment of cases of government corruption, or in other words, the legislative and executive power.
In this way the division of power in a society must establish a counterbalance relationship in the socio-political elites of this as a measure of defense of the citizen. Thus it is possible to prevent circumstances of deterioration of the system or to control and punish the case.
Establishments established through the division of powers
The organizational structure of a territory marked by a firm separation or division of powers derives in the following levels:
- Legislative power, formed by the bodies responsible for carrying out the creation and adaptation of the different laws present in the system.
- Executive power, administrative and governmental system in charge of state management and various public works.
- Judiciary, which includes judicial departments and other courts whose main purpose is the legal protection of citizens and compliance with the laws that govern their daily lives.