Cabinet discusses PM’s core team

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Feb 19, 2018-

The KP Oli government plans to have a strong Prime Minister’s Office, with key point persons at the PMO coordinating the line ministries and working as the primary channel of communication between the prime minister and the ministries, according to sources close to the PM.

The second Cabinet meeting of the new government on Sunday discussed various proposals, including appointment of PM Oli’s “core team” but the decisions of the meeting have not been made public. The meeting also discussed the names to be recommended for National Assembly seats under the government’s quota, while scrapping the decisions made by the outgoing Sher Bahadur Deuba-led government.

According to the sources, Bishnu Rimal has been proposed as the PM’s chief political adviser. Rimal had also served in the same capacity during Oli’s first stint as the prime minister in 2015.

Yubaraj Khatiwada, former Nepal Rastra Bank governor and National Planning Commission vice-chairman, has been proposed for the post of chief economic adviser to the PM. Khatiwada has been working in Oli’s transitional team, setting out the policies and programmes of the new government. The team is led by senior UML leader Bamdev Gautam.

Rajan Bhattarai, former foreign relations adviser to the PM and a member of the Eminent Persons’ Group on Nepal-India Relations, has been proposed as Oli’s foreign relations adviser.

Several other names were tabled at the Cabinet for appointment as press adviser and chief personal assistant to the PM but no decision was made, said the sources.

Prime Minister Oli told reporters at Singha Durbar that the meeting took several crucial decisions that have long-term implications. They would be made public at “an appropriate time”.

Sources close to PM Oli said that the meeting discussed various political appointments to assist the PM in state, economic, publicity and foreign affairs.

But the Cabinet failed to recommend candidates for appointment to the three seats in the Upper House, said the sources. The decision is due to be made next meeting.

The government also approved the resignation of NPC Vice-chairman Swarnim Wagle. Sources added that the decisions kept secret are related to administrative and other regular affairs. After the Cabinet meeting, the PM received a report prepared by the Gautam-led committee on various tasks to be undertaken by the Oli government.

PM moves into Baluwatar

Prime Minister Oli shifted to Baluwatar after the Cabinet meeting on Sunday evening. Hundreds of UML leaders and carders greeted the PM and his wife Radhika Shakya at the official residence.

Soon after entering Baluwatar, PM Oli watered a peepal plant that he had planted during his first stint as prime minister. PM Deuba had shifted to his house in Budhanilkantha on Friday

Published: 19-02-2018 08:08

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