PM Oli gets UML nod to expand Cabinet

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Nov 4, 2015-

The CPN-UML on Tuesday mandated party Chairman and Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli to pick Cabinet members on his own on the basis of geography, gender and inclusivity, and give it a final shape within a couple of days.

Leaders, who attended party’s Standing Committee meeting said the Cabinet would get a full shape with the induction of UML members and some from smaller coalition partners.

“We won’t be meeting again for selecting ministers. The prime minister has been suggested certain criteria and he will work accordingly,” said party’s Secretary Prithivi Subba Gurung after the meeting.

The internal feud in the UML and differences among the coalition partners have held back the Oli-led government from having a final shape to the Cabinet. The debate over whether to name party’s Vice-chairperson Bhim Rawal or Deputy General Secretary Bishnu Paudel as finance minister with a DPM portfolio, and the growing number of aspiring ministers had put the prime minister in a fix.

During the meeting on Tuesday, party leaders suggested PM Oli to establish a disaster management ministry and split the Federal Affairs and Local Development Ministry. Disaster management ministry was proposed in view of easing post-quake reconstruction and federal affairs ministry to handle the possible complexities while implementing the federal structure.  

Meanwhile, PM Oli is preparing to expand his secretariat immediately after the Cabinet gets its full shape. An informed party source said Oli could appoint Kul Chandra Gautam, a former assistant general-secretary of the United Nations, as his foreign policy advisor.

Gautam was nominated Nepal’s candidate by the Madhav Nepal-led government in 2010 for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) presidency as an special advisor on international affairs and peace process.

Similarly, party Secretary Pradeep Gyawali is likely to be picked as chief political advisor to the Oli government. However Gyawali, who has already served as a minister in the past, is reluctant to assume the position, which under the existing law, holds the status of a state minister. “The government is revising working guidelines to appoint him as chief political advisor,” said a source close to PM Oli.

Oli has already appointed Hari Krishna Karki as Attorney General and Pramod Dahal as Press Advisor. Indra Bhandari has been appointed Oli’s chief personal secretary and Ramesh Acharya and Rajesh Shakya as personal secretaries.

Published: 04-11-2015 08:54

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