THE LEGISLATIVE CHAMBERS
SECTION 1 - PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO BOTH CHAMBERS
The Parliament shall be composed of a Chamber of Deputies and a Senate. No one can be simultaneously a member of both the
Chamber of Deputies and The Senate. The two Chambers shall meet together at the beginning and the end of each session, in the
circumstances set forth in Articals 90 and 91, upon the call of the Emperor, and upon such other occasions as may be determined
by the Chambers, The President of the Senate shall preside at all joint meetings of the Chambers.
The regular sessions of Parliament shall convene on the twenty-third day of the month of Tekemt of each year in the Capital of the
Empire and shall continue to the first day of the month of Sene (8 June).
Until a new Parliament shall be elected and convened in accordance with the present Constitution and the electoral law to be
enacted, the two Chambers of Parliament, as heretofore constituted, shall continue to sit and shall, in accordance with the
provisions and procedures established in Chapter V of the present Constitution, exercise the prerogatives and functions and fulfill
the responsibilities provided for in respect of Parliament. The first election to the Chamber of Deputies shall be completed within
two years from the entry into force of the present Constitution and in accordance with the provisions of the electoral law.
No meeting of either Chamber of Parliament shall be closed to the public except upon a request by the Prime Minister, or upon a
decision by a majority vote of the Chamber of Deputies or the Senate, as the case may be, to that effect. No joint meeting of the
Chambers shall be closed to the public except upon a request by the Prime Minister or a decision by the majority of each of the
Chambers to that effect. If, after a question has been declared to be secret, a member of either Chamber makes it known to the
public, either in a speech, or by the press, or by writings, or in any other way, he shall be punished according to the provisions of
Neither of the Chambers shall commence its deliberations on the first day of any session without the presence of two-thirds of its
members, or continue its deliberations, or take any vote on any succeeding day of any session without the presence of a majority
of its members at joint meetings of the Chambers, the presence of a majority of the members of each Chamber shall be required
for deliberations and for voting.
If the quorum of Deputies and of Senators prescribed in Artical 79 is not present on the day designed for the convening of
Parliament or if, thereafter, either of the Chambers, or the Chambers in joint meeting, cannot continue deliberations or vote for
lack of the required attendance, the members present shall take such measures as may be authorized in the rules of procedure of
the respective Chambers, to compel the attendance of a sufficient number of the absent members.
Every Deputy or Senator, before taking his seat in the Chamber to which he has been elected or appointed, shall take, before the
Emperor, or if directed by Him,before the President of the Legislative Chamber concerned, an oath of loyalty to the Emperor and to
the Empire, and shall swear that he will obey the Constitution and the laws of the Empire and will perform his duties
conscientiously and without fear or favour.
Each Chamber shall determine its own rules of procedure and internal discipline.
Members of Parliament shall receive salaries determined by law. Any law increasing the salaries of members of Parliament shall
be effective only from the date of the election of the Next Parliament.
No action or charge may be brought against any member of Parliament, or against any Minister appearing by right or upon the
invitation of either Chamber, for words uttered or written statements submitted by him at any meeting of any committee of either
Chambers, or any joint meeting of the Chambers, or any meeting of any committee of either Chamber. Nevertheless, every
member of each Chamber of Parliament shall be obliged to respect all rules of order, conduct and procedure adopted by such
Chamber for the transaction of its business and shall be subject to disciplinary action on the part of such Chamber for violation of
such rules. No action or charge may be brought against any person or any newspaper for publication, by or under the authority of
Parliament or of either Chamber thereof, as the case may be, of any report, paper, votes or proceedings of Parliament or either
Chamber thereof, as the case may be.
No member of Parliament, during a session thereof, may be arrested or detained or summoned to answer a criminal charge,
unless the permission of the Chamber of which he is a member be obtained, or he be arrested in flagrante delicto. A comparable
immunity does not apply to civil cases.
Laws may be proposed to either, or both Chambers of Parliament:
(a) by The Emperor, or
(b) by ten or more members of either Chamber of Parliament, except that every proposal involving an increase in governmental
expenditure or a new or increased tax shall first be presented to the Chamber of Deputies.
All matters in either Chamber or in joint meeting of the Chambers shall be determined by vote of the majority of the members
present, except as provided in Artical 131. In event of an equal division of votes, the presiding officer shall have a casting vote.
Every proposal of legislation approved by one Chamber of Parliament shall be immediately forwarded through the President
thereof to the other Chamber. If it is approved by the other without amendments within a period of two months, it shall be
promptly communicated through the Prime Minister to the Emperor and shall either be promulgated as law, or returned by the
Emperor to the Chambers with His observations thereon, or with a new proposal of legislation as provided in Artical 91. All laws
duly approved by both Chambers of Parliament shall be forwarded to the Emperor through the Prime Minister, by the Presidents
of Chamber of Deputies and of the Senate. In the event that such law shall receive the approval and signature of the Emperor, it
shall be published by the Minister of the Ren in the Negarit Gazeta, with recital of the affixing of the Signature and the Great Seal of
All Imperial Decrees and all ministerial decrees and orders shall be published in the Negarit Gazeta.
If proposal of legislation approved by one Chamber is not finally acted upon the other within the aforesaid period of two months,
the Chambers shall meet together to discuss the said proposal. If the proposal is approved in such joint meeting, with or without
amendments, within 30 days, it shall be communicated to the Emperor for action in accordance with Artical 88.
If, within the aforesaid period of two months, a proposal of legislation approved by one Chamber, is approved by the other with
amendments, the said proposal shall be returned to the first Chamber for further consideration. If, upon such consideration, it is
approved within 30 days, by the first Chamber, with the said amendments, it shall be communicated to the Emperor for action in
accordance with Artical 88. If, within 30 days, the amendments are not accepted by the first Chamber, the Chambers shall,
thereupon, shall meet together to discuss the proposal. If, in such joint meeting, the proposal is approved, with or without
amendments, within 30 days, it shall, thereupon, be communicated to the Emperor for action in accordance with Artical 88.
If a proposal of legislation approval in one of the Chambers is rejected by the other within two months after its communication to
it, as provided in Artical 88, or if a proposal of legislation is not approved, with or without amendments, after discussion in a joint
meeting, as provided in Artical 89 and 90, full reports on the situation shall be promptly communicated to the emperor by the
Presidents of both Chambers of Parliament, through the Prime Minister, and the Emperor may, thereupon, cause to be transmitted
to both Chambers of Parliament, His observations in regard to such reports and such proposal of legislation, or cause to be
transmitted to the Chambers, a proposal of legislation on the same subject.
In cases of emergency that arise when the Chambers are not sitting, the Emperor may proclaim decrees consistent with the
Constitution, which shall have force of law upon publication in the Negarit Gazeta, pending a decision on the same by Parliament.
To that end, the text of each such decree shall be transmitted for consideration by both Chambers of Parliament at their first
meeting following each proclamation. In the event that, conformable to the provisions of Articals 88, 89, or 90, of the present
Constitution, Parliament shall approve decrees, they shall continue in force and shall become law upon publication, in the Negarit
Gazeta, of said approval. In the event that Parliament shall disapprove any such decree, each such decree shall cease to have force
and effect, upon the publication, in the Negarit Gazeta, of such disapproval.
The Chamber of Deputies
The entire territory of the Empire, as defined in Artical 1 of the present Constitution, shall be divided into electoral districts
containing, as nearly as possible, two hundred thousand inhabitants. The location and limits of each electoral district shall be
determined by law and each such district shall be as regular in shape as circumstances permit. In addition, each town with a
population exceeding thirty thousand inhabitants shall be entitled to one Deputy and an additional Deputy for each fifty thousand
inhabitants in excess of thirty thousand.
Each electoral district shall be represented by two Deputies.
All Ethiopian subjects by birth, of twenty-one years of age or more, who are regularly domiciled or habitually present in any
electoral district and who posses the qualifications required by the electoral law, shall have the right to vote in such electoral
district for the candidates from such district, as members of the Chamber of Deputies. The system of voting shall be secret and
direct. Details of procedure shall be prescribed by law.
To be eligible as a Deputy, a person must be, by birth, an Ethiopian subject who:
(a) has reached the age of twenty-five years;
(b) is a bona fide resident and owner of property in his electoral district, to the extent required by the electoral law; and
(c) is not disqualified under any provision of the electoral law.
Deputies shall be elected for terms of four years and shall be eligible for re-election subject to their continual possession of the
qualifications set forth in Artical 96.
Vacancies that may occur in the membership of the Chamber of Deputies shall be filled as provided in the electoral law.
The President and two Vice Presidents of the Chamber of Deputies shall be elected each year from and by members of the
The Chamber of Deputies shall be sole judge of the qualifications and election of its members.
The Senate shall consist of the Senators appointed by the Emperor for six years.
The Senate shall be composed of a number of persons, not exceeding one half of the total number of Deputies, to be chosen by the
Emperor from amongst those who have, by their acts, secured the confidence and esteem of the people, and from amongst those
who have served their country and their government with distinction.
To be eligible for appointment as a member of the Senate, a person must be, by birth, an Ethiopian subject who:
(a) has reached the age of thirty five years;
(b) is a Prince or other dignitary, or a former high governmental official, or other person generally esteemed for his character,
judgement and public services; and
(c) is not disqualified under any provision of the electoral law.
The Senators first appointed by the Emperor, as provided in Artical 101, shall, immediately after their first meeting, be divided
into three equal groups. The Senators of the first group shall be succeeded at the end of the second year by Senators appointed in
accordance with the provisions of Artical 101, those of the second group, at the end of the fourth year, and those of the third
group, at the end of the sixth year, so that one third be succeeded every second year.
Senators shall be eligible for re-appointment subject to their continued possession of the qualification set forth in Artical 103.
Vacancies in the membership of the Senate shall be filled by appointments in the manner provided in Artical 101.
The President and two Vice Presidents of the Senate shall be appointed each year by the Emperor from amongst the Senators.