Cabinet to have 18 ministries

- TIKA R PRADHAN, Kathmandu

Feb 23, 2018-

The CPN-UML and CPN (Maoist Centre) has agreed to limit the Cabinet to 18 ministries, including the Prime Minister’s Office. A meeting of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli and Maoist Centre Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal at Baluwatar on Thursday morning also finalised a list of ministries and allocated them between the two parties. 

UML leaders said the Oli-led government will have 17 ministries, of which the UML will take charge at 10 and the Maoist Centre seven. If the Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum-Nepal (SSF-N) decides to join the Oli government, the party will get at least two 


According to the UML leaders, the next Cabinet meeting will formally endorse the number of ministries. “The two top leaders have finalised the list of ministries which will be approved by the Cabinet soon,” said UML leader Surendra Pandey. 

The number of ministries has been limited to 18 since the new constitution has 

stated the central government can have a maximum of 25 ministers, including the prime minister. 


Earlier, the Kashiraj Dahal-led Administrative Reforms Commission had recommended 15 ministries but the committee under former minister for General Administration Tek Bahadur Basnet later recommended 18 ministries for the federal government.

With the number of ministries fixed, both the parties are busy finalising names for the ministries. The UML has called its standing committee meeting on Friday morning to finalise the ministers. The Maoist Centre set up a three-man panel under its Chairman Dahal to select candidates, at a meeting held on Thursday evening. With the limited number of ministries, both the parties are finding it difficult to select names as a large number of leaders eye ministerial berths. 

The Oli government is in talks with Madhesi parties, especially the SSF-N, to include them in the Cabinet in a bid to secure a two-thirds majority in Parliament. The left alliance’s support to Chief Minister Lal Babu Raut on Thursday’s vote of confidence in Province 2 Assembly is seen as part of the UML’s attempt to bring the SSF-N in its fold. 

With the left alliance’s support, the Raut-led government got 82 votes, including 32 from the left alliance, comfortably securing the two-thirds majority in the 107-member strong Provincial Assembly.

During the provincial assembly meeting in Janakpur, Raut had sought ‘vote of confidence’ for the coalition government of the SSF-N and Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal (RJP-N.

SSF-N Chairman Upendra Yadav, however, said there was no link between the government formation process in province and the federal government. 

He admitted that they were holding talks with UML leaders on joining the federal government. 

On the other hand, RJP-N leaders said they were not consulted by the parties. “We will discuss about it once we are invited. Statute amendment remains non-negotiable for us,” said Rajendra Mahato, a RJP-N presidium member.



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Published: 23-02-2018 07:59

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