Election Cabinet!

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AFTER oath-taking on Friday and assignment of portfolios to the members of the new Federal Cabinet, the system is effectively back on track following its disruption because of the judicial verdict exactly a week ago. The uncertainty that the judgement created has, therefore, been removed and now it would be a business as usual as far as governance is concerned.
The Federal Cabinet is, no doubt, bulky as it includes 43 members, 27 Federal Ministers and 16 Ministers of State and the possibility of addition of some more cannot be ruled out especially if the Prime Minister is able to enlist political and material support of MQM and this would become clear when Shahid Khaqan Abbasi would pay a visit to the city of Quaid in the next few days. The cabinet is somewhat heavy and because of its composition some analysts dub it as election cabinet. However, we may keep in mind that it is still leaner if we compare it with the Cabinet that we had for the last four years and cabinets of some past governments including PPP, which included more and more people to keep its allies happy in the face of their growing demands. As per Constitutional provisions, the Cabinet can have members up to 11% of the strength of Parliament, which means a 50-member cabinet would be legitimate. But we must appreciate PML(N) and especially former Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif for keeping his cabinet at moderate level despite pressure from the party circles and allies. He saved national exchequer at the cost of political interests of his own party and a correction was required close to the general election. It is a good omen that the Cabinet has necessary representation of all provinces and regions, minorities, women and allies. Some areas that were ignored in the past have understandably been accommodated and hopefully this would galvanize the party further and it would benefit in elections if the incumbents work hard to bring about a socio-economic change in their areas as per aspirations and needs of the people. Restructuring of ministries and divisions was also needed but this should have been done to undo superficialities and not to create more ministries. There was absolutely no justification for separate ministries of Statistics, Anti-Narcotics, Postal Services and Water Resources.