A citizen is someone who enjoys full political rights in a state and in return performs certain duties to the state. A citizen, therefore, is a legal member of a state.
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Citizenship is the legal status of being a member of a particular country, entitling an individual to the rights and privileges granted by that country. It is the relationship between an individual and the state, defining their political and legal rights, duties, and responsibilities.
Citizenship can be acquired in several ways, including:
1. Birthright: In many countries, individuals automatically acquire citizenship if they are born within the country’s territory, regardless of the citizenship status of their parents. This is known as birthright citizenship or jus soli.
2. Descent: Some countries grant citizenship to individuals who have at least one parent who is a citizen of that country, regardless of where they are born. This is often referred to as citizenship by descent or jus sanguinis.
3. Naturalization: Many countries offer a process known as naturalization, through which foreign nationals can become citizens after meeting specific requirements, such as residing in the country for a certain period, demonstrating knowledge of the country’s language and culture, and passing a citizenship test.
4. Marriage: Some countries provide a pathway to citizenship for individuals who marry a citizen of that country. The requirements and process may vary depending on the country.
It’s important to note that the specific laws and requirements for acquiring and maintaining citizenship vary from country to country. Each nation has its own citizenship laws and policies that determine who is eligible to become a citizen and the rights and responsibilities associated with citizenship.
Citizenship provides individuals with certain rights and benefits, such as the right to vote, access to social services, protection by the country’s laws, and the ability to live and work in the country without immigration restrictions. It also entails responsibilities, such as obeying the country’s laws, paying taxes, and potentially serving in the military or participating in civic duties.
Type of Citizenship
- Citizenship by birth: this is the situation whereby the parents of the person are
natives in the country or a person born by citizens of a country. For example; a child born by Nigerian parents automatically becomes a Nigerian by birth.2. Citizenship by registration or marriage: this occurs when Nigerian male marries for example a Briton (a British) woman. The woman automatically becomes a citizen of Nigerian through registration of marriage.3. Citizenship by nationalization: this happens when an alien or a foreigner becomes a
citizen of another country having fulfilled and satisfied the countries conditions to
acquire the citizen of that country as laid down by the constitution of that country. It is a process by which an individual voluntary changes his/her citizenship of a state to that of another in which he or she resides. Some of the conditions that an alien of another country must fulfil are: as follow;
* Applicant must be an adult acceptable in the community.
* Applicant must be of good character
* Applicant must swear an oath of allegiance
*. Applicant must be able and have been contributing to community and national development and growth.
* Applicant must have been residing in a particular community in that country for
specific period of time.
4. Honorary citizenship: from time to time the government of a country have been
honouring distinguished or important person or eminent person with citizenship of that country. For example such icon figures in Nigeria like: Sir Ahmadu Bello, Nnamdi
Azikwe, Chief Obafemi Awolowo have been honoured with citizenship of other countries of the world.
5. Citizenship by blood ties or decent: citizenship pf a country is also acquired through blood ties. This means that the, fact that a child was born in a particular
community in the country does not necessarily confer the status of the
citizenship on that person.