Opinion

New Federal Cabinet-A Political Gimmick

Yesterday President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari took oath from new cabinet members, recently reshaped cabinet has 21 federal ministers and one minister of state; new cabinet consists of four first time ministers i.e. Changez Jamali (Science and Technology), Khuda Bakhsh Rajar (Narcotics Control) and Umar Gorgage (Postal Services), it also has previous cabinet ministers i.e. Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhatar, reappointed as Minister of Defense and Rehman Malik as Interior Minister. New cabinet includes old ministers with new portfolios i.e. Hina Rabbani Khar,who has been appointed as Minister of State for Foreign affairs.

Last month in a gathering, Federal Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan had declared that President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani had decided to reduce the Federal Cabinet to cut down the expenditures of Government. PPP officials time and again told the media that this resizing is not being done for political gains but this move is done in accordance with 18th amendment. Thus main motive is too decrease the lavish expenditures of large cabinet which a country like Pakistan can not afford. On 9th February, 2011, over 50 PPP ministers resigned from their ministries on the orders of Prime Minister and President, so that Government can resize Federal Cabinet.

Most political analysts are terming it a political gimmick, as elections are just around the corner, PPP will complete its five year term in 2013, which is only two years away. According to these analysts, PPP Government is trying to make its angry voters happy by making such moves. Some people are also of the view that this action is just to stop PML-N critics, who were building pressure on PPP Government by giving deadlines.

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani really appreciated performance of his cabinet members while announcing the dissolution of cabinet. He told media while praising leaving Cabinet Ministers that Forex reserves had increased and exports increased manifold.  Pakistan has heard him saying often That PPP government inherited a crippling economy. The authenticity of this statement is left on public vigilance who can differentiate between right and false statements.

In February 2008, when PPP government took over Pakistan economy was growing at a healthy average growth rate of 7 % / year, Pakistan got FDI of $ 8.4 Billion in 2007, Pakistan’s stock market crossed 15000 points in 2008 and country’s poverty reduced from 34 % to 24 % in era of 2000-2007. Now after only 3 years Pakistan’s economy is reeling, Pakistan got meager FDI of 828.50 million, growth rate is very low, dollar-rupee exchange rate jumped from Rs 60 to Rs 85,Stock Market is roaming around 12000 points.

Most of the experts agree on the point that these types of moves are useless, as real problems of the people are still unsolved. Public want immediate solution of their problems such as basic Life necessities, Inflation, unemployment, load-shedding, terrorism etc.

About the author

Emaad Qureshi

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