ISLAMABAD - The government has appointed Shahid Mahmood, a BS-22 officer of Pakistan Administrative Service, as the finance secretary.

“In pursuance of Establishment Division’s Notification No PF (431)/E-5(PAS), dated June 17, 2017, Shahid Mahmood, a BS-22 officer of Pakistan Administrative Service presently posted as Special Secretary, Finance Division, has relinquished the charge of the post of Special Secretary Finance Division on June 19, 2017 and assumed the charge of post of Secretary Finance Division Islamabad on the same date,” stated an official notification issued by the Ministry of Finance.

Mahmood has replaced Tariq Bajwa, who was retired on Sunday after reaching the retirement age of 60 years. Sources informed The Nation that trhe government would start the process of appointing new governor of State Bank of Pakistan, chairman of Federal Board of Revenue and Auditor General of Pakistan after Eidul Fitr. All these three key departments are currently being run through temporarily-appointed personnel.

They further informed that the government was busy in making and approval of budget. However, the government would start the process of appointing new heads of SBP, FBR and AGP, as the budget has been approved, they added. The post of the SBP governor fell vacant on April 29 after Ashraf Mahmood Wathra completed his three-year tenure. The government appointed Riaz Riazuddin as SBP Acting Governor. According to the SBP Act, 1956, the federal government would have to appoint the new SBP governor within three months after the seat falls vacant.

“At any time when the office of the SBP governor is vacant, the federal government may appoint an acting governor, provided that the office of governor shall be filled within a period not exceeding three months,” says the SBP Act 1956. Similarly, the post of FBR chairman would also vacate from June 30, 2017. The government had given contract to FBR Chairman Dr Mohammad Irshad till June 30 to prepare the annual budget for the next financial year.

Meanwhile, the post of the auditor general of Pakistan (AGP) fell vacant on April 28 following the retirement of Acting AGP Haque Nawaz. The government had appointed Imran Iqbal - currently working as additional AGP - as acting AGP until a regular replacement is found.