Retaining Federal Ministers of Devolved Ministries:
Undue Burden on National Exchequer; PILDAT
Right-Sizing the Federal Cabinet demanded
PILDAT has demanded that the Federal Government should immediately right-size the cabinet and has questioned the Federal Cabinet’s decision to retain 7 Federal Ministers despite devolving 7 Federal Ministries. “Retaining Ministers after devolving their portfolios is not only an undue burden on the National Exchequer, it is also against the spirit of devolution,” said PILDAT.
On June 28, the Federal Cabinet, while approving devolution of 7 ministries, decided that the number of ministers would remain unchanged in the Federal Cabinet and those left without a portfolio as a result of devolution would be given new assignments by the Prime Minister.
“It is rather strange and questionable that the Prime Minister has decided to retain ministers despite devolving portfolios as paying ministers without any job or work is not only a bad practice and precedence but extreme mismanagement of scarce national resources when the Government is already under pressure to curtail expenditures and plug corruption,” said PILDAT. PILDAT cautioned that creation of new ministries or portfolios just to adjust these ministers will be wastage of public funds, and against the spirit of the 18th Constitutional Amendment as well as harmful to the whole process of devolution.
PILDAT appreciated the devolution of 7 more ministries to the provinces, completing the process two days before the deadline of June 30, 2011 under the 18th Constitutional Amendment according to which after this 3rd and final phase of devolution total 17 Federal Ministries and the subjects of Concurrent List will stand dissolved from July 01, 2011.
PILDAT demanded that as in first two phases of devolution in which 12 Federal Ministries were devolved and their ministers were discharged as well, Government should do the same and discharge ministers without any portfolio immediately. PILDAT also demanded that after completion of devolution, Standing Committees of the National Assembly and the Senate should also be re-arranged and re-adjusted accordingly.