Ntlo Ya Dikgosi was established following the Constitutional Ammendment of 2005.

The amendment was brought about by the adoption of a Motion by Parliament. The Motion was tabled by the then Member of Parliament Honourable. O. Mfa, seeking to amend Section 77, 78 and 79 of the Constitution in order to render them tribally neutral

 Ntlo Ya Dikgosi is made up of 35 Members.

One person from each of the following areas, which person for the time being performs the functions of the office of Kgosi in respect of such areas:-

  • Barolong Farms in the Southern District
  • Ga Malete in the South East District
  • Ga Mmangwato in the Central District
  • Goo Tawana in the North West District
  • Kgatleng District
  • Kweneng District
  • Ngwaketse in Southern District
  • Tlokweng in the South East District

 Twenty (20) elected Members by the regional electoral college from the following regions:-

Bobirwa, Boteti, Mahalapye, Serowe, Tonota, Tswapong, Tutume, Ghanzi East, Ghanzi West, Kgalagadi North, Kgalagadi South, Letlhakeng, Molepolole, Thamaga, Maun, Ngami, Okavango, Kanye, Moshupa, Ngwaketse West.

Two (2) Members from Chobe and North East.

Five (5) Members appointed by His Excellency the President.


Before taking his or her seat, every Member of  Ntlo ya Dikgosi is required by Rule 2 of the Rules of Procedure, to take and subscribe before  Ntlo ya Dikgosi the oath or affirmation of allegiance according to the Rules of Procedure of the House.

The tenure of office for Members of Ntlo ya Dikgosi is five years tied to the life of Parliament and comes to an end upon the dissolution of Parliament. This means that a Member of Ntlo ya Dikgosi vacates his/her seat upon the expiration of a period of five years which is from the date upon the Member took the oath of allegiance.


Ntlo ya Dikgosi is an advisory body to the National Assembly on issues of national interest as set out in the Constitution of Botswana. According to the Constitution, Ntlo ya Dikgosi has the responsibility;

  • To consider a copy of any bill which is referred to it under the provisions of Section 88 (2). The National Assembly shall not proceed upon any bill (including any amendment to a bill) that, in the opinion of the person presiding, would if enacted, alter any of the provisions of the Constitution or affect;
  • the designation, recognition, removal of powers of Dikgosi, Dikgosana or Headmen;
  • the organisation, powers or administration of customary courts;
  • customary law or the ascertainment or recording of customary law; or
  • tribal organisation or tribal property
  • To discuss any matter within the executive or legislative authority of Botswana of which it considers it is desirable to take cognisance in the interests of the tribes and tribal organisations it represents and to make representations thereon to the President, or to send messages thereon to the National Assembly (Section 85.(5)).
  • It communicates its advice to the National Assembly through the Resolutions.

The House is presided over by the Chairperson assisted by the Deputy Chairperson who are both elected every 2 and half years.