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THE House of Chiefs (HOC) is established under Article 169 of the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Act No. 2 of 2016. It is required to meet at least twice a year although the President of the Republic of Zambia may call for it to sit as and when need arises. The House of Chiefs has a Secretariat which is headed by the Clerk of the House of Chiefs who is assisted by a Deputy Clerk.

There are 50 members in the House of Chiefs with a 5 year mandate. The members are drawn from all the 10 Provinces. Each Province is represented by 5 Chiefs selected by the Provincial Council of Chiefs in the respective provinces.

The House of Chiefs is responsible for performing the following functions as provided for under Article 169 (5) of the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Act No. 2 of 2016:

  1. Consider and discuss a Bill relating to customs and tradition referred to it by the President before the Bill is introduced into the National Assembly;

  2. Initiate, discuss and make recommendations to the National Assembly regarding socio-economic development;

  3. Initiate , discuss and decide on matters relating to customary law and practice;

  4. Initiate, discuss and make recommendations to a local authority regarding the welfare of communities in a local authority;

  5. Make proposals on areas in customary law that require codification;

  6. Advise the Government on traditional and customary matters; and

  7. Perform other functions as prescribed.