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17.ЗАКОН УКРАЇНИ Про місцеве самоврядування в Україні


Unit 1.
Political System    
State and Government of Great Britain  

Great Britain is a parliamentary democracy with a constitutional monarch — Queen Elizabeth II — as head of the State. Political stability owes much to the monarchy. Its continuity has been interrupted only once (the republic of 1649—1660) in over a thousand years. The Queen is impartial and acts on the advice of her ministers. Parliament The Parliament comprises the House of Commons, the House of Lords and the Queen in her constitutional role. The Commons has 650 elected Members of Parliament (MPs), each representing a local constituency. The Lords is made up of hereditary and life peers and peeresses, and the two archbishops and 24 most senior bishops of the established Church of England. The centre of parliamentary power is the House of Commons. Limitations on the power of the Lords — it rarely uses its power to delay passage law — are based on the principle that the House as a revising chamber should complement the Commons and not rival it. The proceedings of both houses of Parliament are broadcast on television and radio, sometimes live or more usually in recorded and edited form. Once passed through both Houses, legislation receives the Royal Assent. General elections to choose MPs must be held at least every five years. Voting, which is not compulsory, is by secret ballot and is from the age of 18. The candidate polling the largest number of votes in a constituency is elected. In the election of June 1987, when 75 percent of the electorate voted, the Conservative Party gained an overall majority of 101 (Conservative — 375 seats, Labour — 229, Liberal — 17, Social Democratic — 5 and others — 24). In 1988 the Liberal and Social Democratic parties merget and are now Liberal Democrats. Government The Government is formed by the party with majority support in the Commons. The Queen appoints its leader as Prime Minister. As head of the Government the Prime Minister appoints ministers, of whom about 20 are in the Cabinet — the senior group which takes major policy decisions. Ministers are collectively responsible for government decisions and individually responsible for their own departments. The second largest party forms the official Opposition with its own leader and "shadow cabinet". The Opposition has a duty to criticise government policies and to present an alternative programme. Policies are carried out by government departments staffed by politi­cally neutral civil servants. They serve the government of the day regardless of its political complexion. Party gained the right to form a Government by winning the general election in May 1997. Mr. Blair, the leader of the Labour Party, became Prime Minister. He selected a team of Ministers to serve in his Ministries. There is no limit on the size of the Cabinet but the number of salaried Secretaries of state is limited to 21. Cabinet meetings are usually held on a Thursday morning in the Cabinet room at 10 Downing Street. Local government Parliament in London is responsible for carrying out national policy, but many public services are provided by local government. The United Kingdom is divided into administrative areas known as "counties" and each county has a "county town" where the offices of the local government are located. Local government is responsible for organising such services as education, libraries, police and fire services, road-building and many others.

Word list

monarch монарх

political stability політична стабільність

to owe бути зобов'язаним

monarchy монархія

continuity неперервність, нерозривність

to interrupt переривати

impartial неупереджений, справедливий

to act on the advice of smb. діяти згідно з правилами когось

to comprise включати

the House of Commons Палата громад

the House of Lords Палата лордів

to represent репрезентувати, бути представниками

local constituency місцевий виборчий округ (виборча кампанія) hereditary — спадковий

peer — пер, лорд

peeress — дружина пера, леді

archbishop архієпископ

bishop єпископ

church церква

rarely рідко

to delay затримувати, перешкоджати to complement доповнювати to rival конкурувати, суперничати at least принаймні

compulsory обов'язковий, примусовий

by secret ballot таємним голосуванням

majority більшість

support підтримка

to appoint призначати

responsible for smth. відповідальний за щось

department відділ, галузь, відомство

opposition опозиція

"shadow cabinet" "тіньовий кабінет"

alternative programme альтернативна програма

authority влада

to provide постачати, забезпечувати, доставляти, вживати заходів, передбачати education освіта legislation законодавство

to carry out виконувати, втілювати (syn. fulfil, realize) to carry out policy — проводити політику county графство (Brit), округ (Amer.)

Exercise 1

Read and translate the text into Ukrainian. Exercise 2

Answer the following questions.

1. What kind of country is Great Britain?

2. Who is the Queen of Great Britain?

3. What Houses does the Parliament of Great Britain comprise?

4. What House is the centre of parliamentary power in Great Britain?

5.  Is voting compulsory in Great Britain?

6.  What are the main Parties in Great Britain?

7.  Who appoints the Prime Minister of Great Britain?

8.  Who appoints the British Ministers?

9.  What party forms the official Opposition?

10. What do the local authorities provide?

Exercise 3

Find English equivalents in the text.

-    конституційна монархія

-    місцевий виборчий округ

-    електорат

-    загальні вибори

-    згода королеви

-    "тіньовий кабінет"

-    альтернативна програма

Exercise 4

Describe the system of government of Great Britain using the following scheme.

Sovereign — The Queen is the head of the Government. She makes laws with the Parliament

The System of Government

Exercise 5

Read the text. Give Ukrainian equivalents for the words in bold type. Translate the text into Ukrainian.


This is the House of Commons where Members of Parliament take their seats on the green leather benches according to their party and position. From this we get the terms "front benches", "back benches"'and "cross benches". The two sides, Government and Opposition, sit facing one another. If, for example, you sit in the Public Gallery of the House of Commons, you would see the Government sitting to the left of the table. The Opposition parties would be seated on the right. Government ministers sit on the front bench on the Government side of the Chamber. They are therefore known as Government front-benches. Those MPs who belong to the same party as the Government but who do not hold a Government post are known as Government back­benches. The Official Opposition is divided in the same way. The Opposition consists of all those parties which, as a result of the last general election, are not part of the Government. It is made up of the Official Opposition, the largest Opposition party and a number of smaller parties. The Labour Party has the largest number of MPs in the House of Commons having won the most seats in the general election of 1997. The party winning most seats in a general election will form a government and the party leader becomes Prime Minister. As the Conservatives won the general elections of 1979, 1983 and 1992, we had a Conservative Government for eighteen years with the party leader, firstly Mrs. Thatcher, and from November 1990 Mr. Major as Prime Minister. There were Labour Governments from 1964—1970, 1974—1979 and since their election victory in 1997 Mr. Blair has chosen a team of ministers to help him, drawn from members of his own party in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. Together they make up the Government.

Exercise 6


The country is divided into 659 voting areas or ... which each ... one MP to serve in the ... MPs have to represent all of their regardless of whether they voted for them. In addition MPs have a duty to their political party, to themselves and their own beliefs and to the nation as a whole. Once or twice a week people in a constituency have the chance to meet their ... when they can talk about their problems, large or small. People may come to their MP with ... or problems or perhaps someone has a relative in hospital and finds it difficult to get there on public transport. An MP spends time at ... and during holidays meeting people in local factories, clubs, schools, etc. The working hours of the House of Commons are very unusual. Most MPs start their day early in the... and may not get home until ... or later. It is important for MPs to keep up with the ... — so the first thing they do in the morning is to look through the newspapers to know what has been happening overnight both in this country and ... MPs often do this over breakfast. The first thing an MP does after arriving at the House of Commons is to collect his ... MPs receive huge amounts of mail every day; so reading and answering ... takes a large amount of time. On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings many MPs will be sitting on Committees. At 2.30 p.m. each day the ... walks in procession to the Chamber of the House of Commons to begin the day's .... The first hour of the afternoon from 2.30 to 3.30 p.m. is Question Time at which most MPs like to be present because they have a chance to ask the money about what it is doing or not doing — and why. They especially like to be present on Tuesdays and Thursdays for Questions to the Prime Minister. From tea time until about 10.00 p.m. there are ... in the Chamber in which MPs may try to speak, especially if the subjects are of interest to their constituents. Sometimes a MP finally gets to bed when it is nearly time to begin the next day's work.

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