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April 28, 2020

Cabinet size reaches 50


April 28, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan scores half century of his cabinet team.

With 27 federal ministers, four ministers of state, five advisers and 14 special assistants now the cabinet size has come to to 50.

On Monday, the prime minister in a major reshuffle in his top media team replaced Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan with Senator Shibli Faraz and Lt Gen (R) Asim Bajwa. Faraz is now the federal minister for information and broadcasting whereas Bajwa takes over a PM’s Special Assistant on Information.

This reshuffle takes the total of the cabinet members to 50 excluding Prime Minister Imran Khan. The number of federal ministers was earlier 26 but with the induction of Shibli Fraz, their strength is now 27.

Before coming into power, the PTI and Prime Minister Imran Khan have been vowing for small cabinet but like other governments, it too ended up with a big one.

Although many even from with the PTI criticise the growing number of un-elected advisers and special assistant in the cabinet, this was reflected in the PTI’s commitments.

The PTI had promised to have a cabinet of “change leaders” to ensure the implementation of his agenda of change.

Giving its 100-day plan, the PTI government had said, “Any agenda, no matter how good on paper, will only have impact if implemented well. Implementing change in government is messy, hard work that requires resolve, capability, as well as constant learning and adaptation.

We believe we are ready to implement an agenda of change, better than anyone else in Pakistan, because we have the highest aspirations; we have a team, led by Imran Khan, including some of the best political and professional talent in the country; and we now have experience of government that we will build on. We will release further details of our implementation plan over the next few weeks, but broadly, Imran Khan’s government will ensure the implementation of this agenda through the following actions.

1. Imran Khan will select a cabinet of change leaders. Imran Khan has a track record of building teams that win, and he will bring that approach to how he will select his team to run the country. PTI’s cabinet will consist of people with leadership ability, with professional experience, and the highest standards of integrity, to steer Pakistan through its journey of change.

2. The prime minister will personally oversee reform and manage the performance of his team. In line with how great reform journeys have happened elsewhere, the reform process will be led by, and personally overseen by Imran Khan himself.

Key items on the reform agenda will be reviewed on a monthly or on a quarterly basis. Any challenges will be unblocked.

Progress, both of the agenda, and of the performance of key ministers, will be based on a few key metrics, so that honest and fact-based discussions can be had on the pace of progress. We will ensure that change happens, not just because we will plan, but because the PTI team in government will be constantly working on implementing that plan.

3. There will be a Reform Unit driving change in the Prime Minister’s Office. To support the process of reform, in addition to the cabinet, Imran Khan will create a small team of reform leaders, champions and experts to help achieve his vision of transforming the country, as part of a high-performance reform unit in his office. This team will consist of the best professional talent that Pakistan has to offer, whether elected, from a government background, or a private background.

4. We will run Pakistan’s most transparent government. Government in Pakistan has often underachieved, because what it is normally doing is not visible to the public. We will create Pakistan’s most transparent government, to give our citizens a clear view of what is working and what isn’t. Progress on key priorities will be made public every three months, so that the people of Pakistan, the real stakeholders of change, are part of our journey of reform.”