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New Cabinet: Who’s in, who’s out?

  • Published at 10:48 pm January 3rd, 2019
New cabinet
Clockwise, AMA Muhith, Salman F Rahman, Dipu Moni, Shajahan Khan, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, Tarana Halim and Mahi B Chowdhury Dhaka Tribune

Party insiders say Mashrafe may be deputy minister for Youth and Sports, Muhith likely to keep his position, Shajahan Khan might be dropped

The members of the new Cabinet Division will be sworn in on Monday at 3pm, the president's Press Secretary Joynal Abedin told reporters at Bangabhaban on Thursday.

There is much anticipation surrounding those who will be a part of the new Cabinet.

Even though many lawmakers are already busy lobbying to get a position in the Cabinet, senior Awami League leaders have said the party President Sheikh Hasina is yet to discuss who’s in and who’s out.

Article 56 (1) of the Constitution says that there shall be a Prime Minister. The other ministers, state ministers and deputy ministers as may be determined by the Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is currently heading a 49-member Cabinet. There are 30 ministers, 17 state ministers and two deputy ministers. Four technocrat ministers resigned last month, before the elections. 

The new Cabinet will be larger in size as it will include elected members from the Grand Alliance – Jatiya Party and Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh.

Who’s out?

Speaking to the Dhaka Tribune, two Awami League Presidium members and three advisor members said Cabinet members who did not get party nomination may be dropped out from the new cabinet.

Those who did not get nominations this election include Disaster Management and Relief Minister Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya, State Minister for Information Tarana Halim and Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports Arif Khan Joy.

Also Read- Newly elected MPs sworn in, BNP skips oath ceremony

According to Awami League sources, Food Minister Qamrul Islam, Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, Textiles and Jute Minister Emaj Uddin Pramanik, Shipping Minister Shajahan Khan, State Minister for Social Welfare Nuruzzaman Ahmed and State Minister for Health Zahid Maleque may also be dropped from cabinet.

There are some speculations that Finance Minister AMA Muhith may be left out because of his age. 

But, a senior Awami leader and a minister of present Cabinet told the Dhaka Tribune that there is a strong possibility that Muhith may serve for another year as Finance Minister, but that entirely depends on Sheikh Hasina. 

If Muhith is out former Bangladesh Bank governor Mohammed Farashuddin may be picked as finance minster. 

The rest of the present cabinet members might still be in the new one with their portfolios reshuffled. 

Who’s in?

The new members of the Cabinet will most likely include the winner from Narail 2 – Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza as Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports.

Other new faces in the Cabinet might include Awami League Presidium members Lt Col (Retd) Muhammad Faruq Khan and Abdur Razzak; the PM's Private Sector Affairs Adviser Salman F Rahman, Awami League Joint General Secretary Dipu Moni, the party's Cultural Affairs Secretary Asim Kumar Ukil, Liberation War Affairs Secretary Mrinal Kanti Das, Organising Secretary Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury, Central Committee Member RAM Obaidul Muktadir Chowdhury, Iqbal Hossain Apu and Noor-E-Alam Chowdhury.

Also, Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh leader Mahi B Chowdhury may be included in the cabinet as a state minister.

According to Awami League sources Jatiya Party may get three or four minister and two state minister positions, while Workers Party and Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) will have their representatives in the cabinet.

Sources from the Cabinet Division (Rules and Service Branch) told the Dhaka Tribune that they have completed the process of forming the new government to help the President to administer the oath of office to the new Cabinet.

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