The Clerks Office
Profile of the current Clerk
The office of the Clerk of the National Assembly is enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of Zambia. Article 73 states that "There shall be a Clerk of the National Assembly and such other offices in the department of the Clerk of the National Assembly as may be prescribed by an Act of Parliament"
The National Assembly Staff Act 25 of 1991, Section 3 (i) states that "There shall be a Clerk of the National Assembly who shall be appointed by the President; Provided that no person shall be appointed Clerk unless a proposal for the appointment of that person has been submitted to the Assembly and the Assembly has re solved that s/he should be so appointed."
The National Assembly Standing Order No. 112 of 1986 also stipulates that "The Clerk, to whom all correspondence shall be addressed, shall be responsible for the regulation of all matters connected with business of the Assembly, and shall have the direction and control over all the officers employed by the Assembly subject to such orders as s/he may from time to time receive from Mr Speaker or the House."
The Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly is an important one. It carries heavy responsibilities. The Clerk is the Chief Advisor to the House, the Hon. Mr Speaker, the Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of Committees. During the sittings, the service of the House itself is maintained by the Clerk and her assistants who sit at the Table of the House. They keep the minutes of proceedings, which are subsequently published as the votes and proceedings. The Clerk is the custodian of all records and documents. She prepares the order or notice paper and any other paper issued in connection with the business of the House. This information helps Members to know what business of the House will be on that day. The Clerk reads the Bill and amendments to be brought forward in order to ensure that correct procedure is followed regarding them. She scrutinises and checks all Public and Private Bills during their passage through the House. She examines public petitions before submitting them to the Hon. Mr Speaker for his approval.
As Chief Executive, the Clerk of the National Assembly is the Controlling Officer of the Institution. Another important function of the Clerk is to preside over the election of the Speaker and Deputy Speaker at the first sitting of a new Parliament after the general elections. In addition, the Clerk is ex-officio member and the Secretary/Treasurer of both the Zambia Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and the Zambia National Group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union.
Administratively, the Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly and the various departments thereunder, are provided for in the National Assembly Staff Act No 25 of 1991 section 4.