The federal cabinet of interim Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk took oath on Tuesday to take up their responsibilities and ministries. The Express Tribune looks into the diverse portfolios and the candidates’ background.
In comparison to former premier Shahid Khaqan Abbasi’s 43-member federal cabinet, PM Mulk’s only consists of six members. Former ambassador to the United Nations, Abdullah Hussain Haroon, takes up charge as the foreign minister.
The former Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government saw two foreign ministers; Khawaja Asif and Khurram Dastgir. Asif was appointed in Abbasi’s federal cabinet and was disqualified by the Islamabad High Court in April.
Former defence minister Dastgir took charge of the ministry as it landed in his portfolio additionally. For the first four years of the government, deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif headed the ministry.
Haroon takes charge of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, National Security Division. Additional: Ministry of Defense [and production].
Replacing Ahsan Iqbal and Chaudhry Nisar is foreign Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) chief secretary Muhammad Azam Khan who took charge as Interior Minister. Khan’s portfolio includes Ministry of Interior, Capital Administration and Development Division and Ministry of Narcotics Control. Additional responsibility includes Ministry of Inter-Provincial Coordination.
He is a Civil Servant belonging to the Pakistan Administrative Services previously known as District Management Group.
Dr Shamshad Akhtar, PhD, is a former State Bank of Pakistan governor, development economist, diplomat and intellectual and has been handed the finance ministry was left leader-less after the former finance minister Ishaq Dar resigned amid corruption probe. For five months, the ministry was hung with no invigilation. Dr Miftah Ismail was sworn in as finance minister in April for one month.
Her portfolio includes Ministry of Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs. Ministry of Statistics. Ministry of Planing, Development and Reform. Additional responsibility includes Ministry of Commerce and Textile, Ministry of Industries and Production.
Barrister Syed Ali Zafar takes up charge as the federal Law Minister. Zafar is a Supreme Court barrister and member of the Lahore and Punjab Bar associations. He’s also an active member of the Human Rights Society and founding member of South Asian Association for Regional Co-operation in Law (SAARCLaw).
Former law minister Zaid Hamid was forced to resign after Tehreek-e-Labbaik (TLYRA) protesters took hostage the Faizabad interchange between Islamabad and Rawalpindi after an amendment was proposed in the Khatm-e-Nabuwwat clause. The ministry was left unattended after Hamid left a third time.
Hamid was made law minister in 2013, he was then replaced by Pervaiz Rasheed in 2016, the position was then taken up by Hamid in Abbasi’s cabinet.
Zafar’s portfolio includes Ministry of Law and Justice, Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs, and Ministry of Information, Broadcasting, National History and Literary Heritage.
Businessman Muhammad Yusuf Shaikh takes up role of federal minister of education and professional training. His additional responsibilities include Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination. Ministry of Religious Affairs and Inter-faith Harmony.
Former senator Roshan Khursheed Bharucha takes up charge of the Ministry of Human Rights, Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan and Ministry of States and Frontier Regions.