PESHAWAR: After much fanfare, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Jamaat-eIslami (JI) have finally reached an agreement over the much coveted education ministry in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) cabinet.
“JI has accepted the request of PTI Chairman Imran Khan, over ministry of education in the provincial cabinet on the condition that certain recommendations put forward by us for the promotion of education in K-P will be incorporated,” said JI central Deputy Chief and K-P Senior Minister Sirajul Haq.
Addressing a press conference at Chief Minister house late on Tuesday, the two coalition partners announced that they had reached a compromise over the ministry allotments.
Flanked by PTI provincial information secretary and deputy parliamentary leader in K-P Shuakat Yousafzai, and JI’s Shabbir Ahmad, Sirajul Haq informed that “the ruling PTI government had earlier reached an agreement to give three departments to JI, including finance, education and Zakat & Ushr in the provincial cabinet.”
However, the PTI chairman had requested their coalition government partners to let the education ministry remain with the ruling party. “We honoured the request of PTI chief and have settled for the local government,” Haq announced. He revealed that the PTI had also the offered the ministry of communication and works to sweeten the deal, but the JI refused this.
PTI though still had to agree to certain conditions of the JI for retaining the education ministry. Yousufzai said that the PTI had agreed to consult the JI and other coalition partners before finalising education syllabus in the province. Among other JI recommendations were establishing a joint commission for framing policies in the education sector.
Yousafzai said that the speculations in media about differences between the coalition partners were totally wrong, adding that there was no such issue between them. He added that the PTI-led coalition government was on same page, and would jointly work for elimination of terrorism, establishment of sustainable peace, and eradication of corruption in the province.
He furthermore said that the government would take steps for the creation of job opportunities and attracting local and foreign investments. He informed that the foreign investors were showing their willingness to invest in energy sector, which could helpful to address the growing shortages of electricity in the province.
Yousafzai informed that the 12 members of the K-P cabinet would take oath on Thursday, June 14. When asked about the finalisation of names of ministries, he replied that the final decision would be taken on Wednesday in a meeting of coalition partners.
Responding to a question about presentation of K-P budget, Haq said that the ministry of finance had proposed the date of June 17 but a formal date would be announced after consulting with the Speaker of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly.