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April 12, 2008

21-member Sindh cabinet takes oath

April 12, 2008

KARACHI: An initial 21-member Sindh cabinet took oath at the Governor House here on Friday. Sindh Governor Dr Ishrat-ul-Ebad Khan administered the oath at an impressive ceremony held at the Darbar Hall of the Governor House.

The new cabinet includes four women ministers, two ministers from minority members and one from the Awami National Party (ANP). It comprises Pir Mazhar-ul-Haq, Dr Zulfiqar Mirza, Ali Nawaz Shah, Manzoor Husain Wassan, Ayaz Soomro, Murad Ali Shah, Nadir Magsi, Agha Siraj Durrani, Jam Saifullah Dharejo, Sajid Jokhio, Akhtar Jadoon, Jam Mehtab, Amir Nawab, Abdul Haq Bhurt, Mukesh Kumar, Sassui Palejo, Shazia Mari, Nargis N D Khan, Tauqir Fatima, Abdul Jalil Memon and Dayaram.

The ceremony, conducted by Chief Secretary Fazl-ur-Rahman, started at 4:10 pm in which Governor Ishrat-ul-Ebad administered the oath. Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah was also present on the occasion while the ceremony was attended, among others, by Prime Minister’s Advisor for Interior Rahman Malik, Speaker Sindh Assembly Nisar Ahmad Khuhro, MNAs, MPAs, representatives of armed forces, Home Secretary Arif Ahmad Khan, IGP Azhar Ali Farooqi, CCPO Niaz Ahmad Siddiqi, senior government officials, PPP leaders and notables.

The governor and the chief minister held a meeting after the ceremony with the newly-inducted ministers. Rahman Malik and Nisar Ahmad Khuhro were also present.The governor felicitated the ministers and hoped that they would serve the province and its people to the best of their abilities.

Fateha was also offered for the PPP’s chairperson Shaheed Benazir Bhutto. Later, the new ministers, led by the chief minister, visited the Mazar-e-Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and paid homage to the founder of Pakistan. They laid floral wreaths and offered Fateha.

Talking to the media outside the Bilawal House in the afternoon, Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah said establishing peace in the province, providing jobs and

other services to the people would be the priorities of his government. “All possible steps are being taken to protect life and property of the people and no slackness in this regard would be tolerated.”

To a question, he said Pir Mazhar-ul-Haq would be the senior minister of the cabinet. Responding to another question, Shah said the talks with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) would continue. He said the PPP wanted dialogue with all the political parties.

He pledged to accomplish the mission of Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto. He said the induction of 21 ministers in the cabinet was the first phase, while more ministers would be inducted in the next phase.

Shah said the people of Sindh were deprived of their rights and facing problems like lawlessness, price-hike, unemployment, lack of basic facilities, load-shedding, etc. Answering a question, he said the PPP and MQM were coming closer and committees set up in this respect would meet in a couple of days. He said Shaheed Benazir Bhutto wanted a government of national reconciliation and PPP Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari was following the same policy under which governments had been formed at the Centre and the provinces. “We would also promote this process in Sindh.” To a query, Syed Qaim Ali Shah said the probe into violence on April 9 would be expanded after consultation with the cabinet.

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