Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Poll-time govt ‘to be formed today’

Friday, November 09, 2018 - 838 hours ago

Ahead of the 11th parliamentary polls this December, the current government led by Sheikh Hasina is going to form an “election-time government” by dropping four technocrat ministers from the cabinet. Finance minister AMA Muhith yesterday said the election-time government will be formed today. “But no new face would be inducted in the proposed government,” the minister told reporters after a meeting of the purchase committee at the secretariat.

Sources in the Cabinet Division revealed that the proposed poll-time government would be formed in line with the previous government formed by Sheikh Hasina before the 10th parliamentary election in 2014. Muhith said the new cabinet will function with 49 members (Prime Minister, 29 ministers, 17 state ministers and two deputy ministers).

He also said that the four technocrat ministers had sent their resignation letters to the Cabinet Division on Monday after a directive from the prime minister. The resignations would be accepted within a day or two, he added. However, the PM was yet to accept the resignations till the filing of this report at 8 pm yesterday.

Muhith said the cabinet ministers, who will continue with the proposed government, will take over the duties of their counterparts who had tendered their resignations. The cabinet members will continue their activities and also take the required privilege until the formation of the next government.

Besides, the special envoy to the prime minister (accorded status of a minister) and five other advisers to Hasina would also continue with the election-time government, according to sources.

At a press conference at her official residence, Ganabhaban, on October 22, the PM said: “I don’t know whether a poll-time administration is needed. The existing cabinet comprises representatives from all the parties having representation in parliament.”

She claimed that the ongoing development projects will be stalled if the Cabinet was downsized during election time. “We’ve already cleared a number of projects. There’ll be problems in implementing them. If you give more than one ministry to a minister, it is doubtful whether that minister will be able to handle the work load,” she added. Also yesterday, some wings of the Cabinet Division were asked to remain open on Friday and Saturday by the high ups yesterday.

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