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Sunday January 29, 2023

Some of KP caretaker ministers to take oath soon

January 26, 2023

PESHAWAR: Some of the names proposed by different political parties have been cleared for the caretaker cabinet of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and are likely to take oath of their offices in the next few days, according to official sources.

Governor Haji Ghulam Alis will administer them oath. Those cleared so far include former Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police chief Dr Syed Akhtar Ali Shah, former chief secretary Shakeel Durrani, former advocate general Shumail Butt and Barrister Mohammad Ali Saif.

The Awami National Party had proposed Dr Akhtar Ali Shah while Shakeel Durrani was recommended by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf selected Barrister Saif and Shumail Butt for the caretaker government in the province.

Caretaker Chief Minister Mohammad Azam Khan had taken oath of his office last week on Saturday but could not initiate official work due to lack of cabinet.

Each of the political parties has recommended names for the provincial cabinet and they are needed to be cleared by the relevant authorities.

Besides Dr Akhtar Ali Shah, the ANP had proposed former vice chancellor of Bacha Khan University, Charsadda, Prof Dr Abdur Rahim Marwat, and a former female vice chancellor of the University of Swabi Prof Dr Noor Jehan for the caretaker government.

Barrister Mohammad Ali Saif had served in the previous PTI government as a special assistant to chief minister for information and public relations, while Shumail Butt worked as the advocate general.

Another major player Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazlur Rahman is still indecisive and could not select its people for the caretaker cabinet.

According to a senior JUI-F leader in Peshawar, they had initially chosen some people for the caretaker government but delayed it after sensing that the caretaker government may continue its work beyond three months.

“The circumstances are not favourable for the elections soon and that’s why we held some consultations to pick up the best available people for the cabinet. In case the government prolonged, we would have good representatives there,” he argued. According to sources, the chief minister will have a brief cabinet.

“He is likely to have a short cabinet in the first phase and then get some more in the second phase. Once the cabinet size is completed, the chief minister is likely to order a major reshuffle in different departments,” a senior government official told The News.

Pleading anonymity, he said Chief Minister Azam Khan was aware of the way blue-eyed government officials were recently transferred and posted. “Like others, the caretaker chief minister is aware of how some civil servants and police officers were facilitated to hold key rewarding positions in the previous PTI government. They were recently transferred and given prized positions in different places,” he said.

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