Sheikh Rashid appointed to interior, as Azam Swati takes over Railways and Ijaz Shah takes charge of Narcotics Control
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday reshuffled his federal cabinet, formally appointing Abdul Hafeez Shaikh the finance minister and swapping the portfolios of Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed, Ijaz Shah and Azam Khan Swati.
According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, Ahmed has been appointed the new Minister of the Interior, replacing Shah. Similarly, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Senior Vice President Azam Swati—formerly in charge of Narcotics Control—has been granted Ahmed’s old portfolio of the Railways Ministry.
Brig. (retd.) Ijaz Shah, formerly the interior minister, has now been appointed to the Narcotics Control Ministry.
The Prime Minister’s Office said that Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, who took oath of office as a federal minister earlier in the day, has also been formally granted the portfolio of Finance Ministry.
Shaikh was previously the Adviser to the P.M. on Finance. His position became questionable after the Islamabad High Court ruled against the inclusion of advisers and special assistants in cabinet committees. Under Article 91 of the Constitution, the prime minister is empowered to appoint unelected members of Parliament as federal ministers for a period of six months.
The Constitution states that at the end of six months, the appointee would “cease to be a minister and shall not before the dissolution of that Assembly be again appointed a minister unless he is elected a member of that Assembly.” According to local media, it is likely that Shaikh would be granted a Senate seat in the March elections to allow him to continue in office.