PESHAWAR - Following poor performance and public complaints against some ministers, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government Saturday announced major reshuffle in the provincial cabinet changing portfolios of 14 ministers and inducting two new ones.

Eight special assistants were also inducted in the provincial cabinet.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan had earlier hinted at changes in the cabinet in light of the performance of ministers. He had also indicated that new faces particularly from former tribal belt which has now been part of the KP province would also be inducted in the cabinet.

The two new ministers included were Iqbal Shah and Shah Mohammad.

Iqbal Shah belongs to North Waziristan, who has been given the portfolio of relief ministry while Shah Muhammad has been allotted the portfolio of transport. Apart from that, Khaliqur Rehman has been inducted as special assistant on higher education, Arif Ahmad Zai has been given portfolio of mineral ministry and Ghazan Jamal of excise.

Portfolio of Local Bodies Minister Shahram Tarkai has been changed and he has been given portfolio of health while Health Minister Hasham Inamullah has been made social welfare minister.

8 new special assistants and 2 ministers inducted

Likewise, Portfolio of Minister of Elementary Education Ziaullah Bangash has been changed and he has now been made minister for information technology.

Not only this, Special Assistant on Information Technology Kamran Bangash has been allocated portfolio of local bodies. Similarly, Shafiullah, Riaz Khan, Zahoor Shakir, Wazir Zada, Ahmad Khan Swati and Taj Muhammad have been appointed as special assistants to CM.

On this occasion, the chief minister said that reshuffling and extension in cabinet had been carried out to improve performance of different departments. He said public complaints were on the rise about lack of interest on the part of ministers in their performance.

It has also been complained that members of assembly and particularly ministers in majority were not taking part in the assembly sessions. And that’s why the chief minister had now made it clear that stern action would be taken against those who were found missing from the assembly meetings in future.

According to TV reports, Akbar Ayub Khan is appointed as the new minister for elementary education. Akbar Ayub has not studied beyond matric.

Akbar Ayub Khan, who previously held the communication and works portfolio, appears under-qualified for the job.

The official website of the KP provincial Assembly states his educational qualification as matric. The same can be found in his papers submitted to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), where he states his occupation as a businessman and a landlord and that he has studied up to the matriculation level.

On the other hand, the former adviser to the CM on elementary and secondary education, Ziaullah Khan Bangash, holds a Master’s degree in Political Science.

Speaking to a private TV channel following his appointment, Ayub Khan said his educational qualification did not matter, and that he was experienced in educational and administrative affairs.

Meanwhile, KP Information Minister Shaukat Yousafzai while backing Ayub, said he had vast administrative experience. “It does not matter what degree he holds,” said Yousafzai. “He has studied from a reputable institute and is a capable man.”

When asked, the provincial information minister said he did not know who had vetted Ayub for the post.

In a separate video message, Yousafzai said one should not question Ayub’s capabilities solely due to the fact that he had not studied beyond the matriculation level.

“He left for Canada to pursue his construction business while he was in grade 12,” said the information minister. “He is a skilled man and we should extract benefit from his experience and capabilities.”

Yousafzai said the education minister could speak to foreign diplomats and dignitaries as “his English is the best”. He said since education had been bifurcated into two parts, Ayub was given charge of the elementary education, not secondary.

“He has to run an institute and for that, he has ample experience in the past as a minister,” he said.