President administers oath to new cabinet

President Asif Ali Zardari on Friday administered oath to  22-member new Federal Cabinet here on Friday in line with the PPP decision to cut down its size as part of the austerity drive.The new cabinet included 18 old and four new ministers. It also included one minister of state, Hina Rabbani Khar.

The ministers, who took oath at Aiwan-i-Sadr, included Mian Changez Jamali, Dr. Firdous Aishaq Awan, Syed Khurshid Shah, Sardar Alhaj Muhammad Umar Goreja, Hina Rabbani Khar, Mir Israr Ullah Zehri, Arbab Alamgir Khan, Mian Raza Rabbani, Syed Naveed Qamar, Rehman Malik, Amin Fahim, Shahbaz Bhatti, Engineer Shaukat Ullah, Samina Khalid Gurki, Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Haji Khuda Baksh Rajar, Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo, Makhdoom Shahabuddin, Babar Awan, Haji Gulam Ahmed Balour, Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar and Mir Hazar Khan Bajrani.
Prominent members of the previous federal cabinet, who had not been included in the cabinet, are Qamar Zaman Kaira, Raja Parvez Ahsraf and Nazar Muhammad Gondal.
The cabinet members tendered resignations to Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani on Wednesday, after the Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the Pakistan Peoples Party had authorised Gilani to appoint a new “lean” cabinet.
The CEC also tasked the Prime Minister to appoint a smaller cabinet with fewer ministers enjoying reputation of “integrity, competence and efficiency.”
Prime Minister Gilani constituted the new cabinet in consultation with leaders of different political parties and coalition partners, to reduce its size.
The decision of inducting a new cabinet was taken in view of the grave economic difficulties the country was facing – APP