Imran ‘gracious enough’ to allow cabinet slots in 2nd phase: Moonis

New Punjab cabinet comprising 20 ministers will be sworn in within next 24 to 48 hours


Says nothing more needed after clinching CM’s office.

LAHORE    -   The PTI chairman Imran Khan and senior PML-Q leader Moonis Elahi Thursday held a meeting to thrash out issues relating to the formation of Punjab cabinet which is yet to be sworn in despite the oath-taking of Ch Parvez Elahi over one week ago.

The two allies, the PTI and the PML-Q, developed differences over the size and the proportion of their respective shares in the cabinet immediately af­ter the formation of government in Punjab, said the sources. They also divulged that while the PTI chief was in favour of a small cabinet composed of only 20 ministers or so; Ch Parvez Elahi wanted to have a relatively mod­erate one having representation of all Punjab regions. Another point of disagreement between the two allies has been the induction of PML-Q min­isters in the cabinet, according to the sources. While the PTI chief thought that the PML-Q should not have any ministry since it had already got the highest political slot in the province, Ch Parvez Elahi wanted to accommo­date at least two of his party MPAs as had been the case under the previous arrangement, they further informed.

Sharing some details of the meet­ing with PTI chairman Imran Khan, Ch Moonis Elahi in his tweet said he had told Imran Khan that his party did not need any ministry as it was quite satisfied after getting the slot of chief minister. Quoting the PTI chief, Moonis said that Imran Khan was, however, gracious enough to allow induction of PML-Q ministers in the second phase of cabinet expansion.

“Met Imran Khan today. Assured him that he has already made us Punjab chief minister and nothing further is required. He was gracious enough to allow cabinet slots in 2nd phase.” Interestingly, Moonis Elahi in his tweet mentioned the PTI chairman as PM Imran Khan which evoked criticism from his detractors on social media. The PML-Q sources confirmed that the new Punjab cab­inet comprising some 20 ministers will be sworn in within the next 24 to 48 hours. If the Punjab governor refuses to administer the oath, the president will be requested to do the needful, they added.

Meanwhile, names of following MPAs from PTI are making rounds in party circles for induction in the first phase. They include Raja Basharat (Law and Parliamentary Affairs), Ch Zheeruddin (Prosecution), Mian Aslam Iqbal (Housing and Physical Planning), Mian Mahmoodur Rashid (Local Govt), Zain Qureshi (Agri­culture or Local govt), Dr Yasmeen Rashid (Health), Dr Murad Raas (School Education), Humayun Yasir (Higher Education), Hashim Jawan Bakht (Finance), Mohsin Leghari (Ir­rigation), Hasnain Bahadur Dreshak (Livestock), Yawar Bukhari (Baitul Maal), Fayyazul Hasan Chauhan (Prisons) and Hashim Dogar (Home). The names of Ghazanfar Chheena, Majeed Niazi, Jehanzeb Khhichi,Raja Rashid Hafeez, Hamid Yar Hiraj, Taimur Bhatti and Ali Afzal Sahi are also under consideration.

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