In an apparent bid to address the chronic issue of inefficiency and poor performance in the Sindh government, the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party on Wednesday reshuffled the portfolios of some provincial ministers while also notifying changes in the provincial bureaucracy.
Sources in the Sindh government said the decision was made in a meeting co-chaired by PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zardari in Dubai on Tuesday.
According to a notification issued by the deputy cabinet secretary, the ministers whose portfolios have been changed or who have been given additional assignments include Sharjeel Inam Memon, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, Mukesh Kumar Chawla and Dr Sikandar Mandhro.
Minister for Education and Literacy Nisar Ahmed Khuhro has now been given the information and irrigation departments.
The information department was earlier headed by Sharjeel Memon while Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah was looking after the irrigation department.
Memon will retain local government and archives departments. “The government has in principle decided to appoint MPA Nasir Shah as local government minister, but this portfolio will remain with Memon till Shah takes oath of his office,” said a senior PPP leader.
Memon has been assigned the works and services department that was earlier under the domain of Mir Hazar Khan Bijrani. The notification said Bijrani has now been given the education and literacy department.
Minister for Information Technology Mukesh Kumar Chawla has been given two other departments i.e., public health engineering and rural development. Similarly, Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, Environment and Coastal Development Dr Sikandar Mandhro will also look after the cooperation department.
“There have been rampant complaints against some ministers for not delivering and their performance was dismal. Therefore, the leadership decided to change their portfolios,” said another PPP leader.
Changes in bureaucracy
Soon after the shakeup in the Sindh cabinet, the government also reshuffled some bureaucrats.
According to a notification, Additional Chief Secretary Wasim Ahmed has been given the charge of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC). Earlier, the commissioner Karachi was looking after KMC’s affairs.
Wasim Ahmed will be the third bureaucrat in the past one month to have been given the charge of KMC. There has been no permanent officer to look after the KMC affairs since Saqib Soomro left for abroad.
On the other hand, Mumtaz Ali Shah has been appointed as chairman Anti-Corruption Establishment. This is Shah’s third posting in the last one month. He earlier served as secretary boards and universities, secretary works and services and senior member of the Board of Revenue.
Meanwhile, Eijaz Memon has been appointed secretary works and services and Rasheed Solangi as special secretary public health engineering department. Sources said another reshuffle in the bureaucracy is on the cards soon after the newly appointed ministers take charge of their departments.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 23rd, 2015.