LAHORE - The Punjab government is yet to not arrange offices, residences and the staff for the new ministers who sworn in earlier this week.

As the reshuffle and induction of ministers in the Punjab cabinet was unexpected, even the sitting ministers did not know that their portfolios were being changed, one of the ministers told The Nation yesterday.

In an unusual move, the Chief Minister Office kept all the procedure for induction of new ministers and change of portfolios secret. Now, the issue of allotment of offices, residences and staff is being handled on fast track basis, sources said.

As per the official policy, the departments concerned are responsible to provide offices to their ministers while the S&GAD to provide the staff and other facilities like the vehicles, drivers and residences.

 The ministers whose portfolios were changed will continue working in the present offices till the new arrangements are finalized, the sources added.

To a question whether the ministers would be allotted offices in the newly-constructed Minister Block adjacent to the People’s House, an S&GAD officer said that arrangements in the new block are almost final and the ministers would soon be shifted there after the completion of block.

A former officer of the S&GAD requesting anonymity said that all the cabinet members were entitled for an office, staff, vehicle and residence. “In case of non-availability of the officials residences, the ministers could avail the residence allowance and hire a private building for residence,” he told The Nation. Some of the ministers were holding office residences in the GOR-1, he added.

At present, Law minister Rana Sanaullah Khan will use his office at Old Minister Block inside the Civil Secretariat, and Finance Minister Dr Aysha Ghous Pasha at Finance department.

 Excise and Taxation Minister with additional charge of the Information and Culture Mian Mujtaba, Cooperatives minister Malik Muhammad Iqbal Channar, Communication and Works minister Tanveer Aslam Malik, Social Welfare minister Haroon Sultan Bokhari, Livestock minister Asif Saeed Manais, Human Rights minister Khalil Tahir Sandhu, and Population Welfare minister Zakia Shah Nawaz for will also hold offices at the Old Ministers block.

Whereas Labour and Human Resource minister Raja Ashfaq Sarwar, School Education minister Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan, Planning and Development minister Malik Nadeem Kamran who also holds additional charge of the Housing Urban Development, will hold offices at Higher Education Department in the Civil Secretariat.

Food minister Bilal Yaseen, Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries minister Mian Yawar Zaman, and Mines and Minerals minister Sher Ali Khan will keep their offices at Board of Revenue Block. Revenue Minister Mian Atta Muhammad Manika will hold office at Persecution department, while Literacy and Non-formal Education minister Dr Farrukh Javed at Transport House, Women Development minister Hameeda Waheedud Din at Punjab Assembly, Archaeology minister Asif Malik at Forest Block Cooper Road, Special Education minister Ch Muhammad Shafique at Old P&D Building Labor Block, and Specialized Healthcare minister Khwaja Salman Rafique at Health Foundation Building Multan Road.

The ministers who have been allotted portfolios but not the offices include: Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Jehagir Khanzada; Naghma Mushtaq for Zakat and Ushr; Amanat Ullah Khan Shadi Khel for Irrigation; Sheikh Alaud Din for Industries, Commerce and Investment; Manshaullah Butt for Local Government; Mehr Ijaz Ahmad Achlana for Disaster Management; Zaeem Qadri for Auqaf and Religious Affairs; Naeem Akhtar Khan Bhabha for Agriculture, Syed Raza Ali Gillani for Higher Education, Malik Ahmad Yar Hanjra for Prisons; and Khwaja Imran Nazeer for Primary and Secondary Healthcare.

According to a senior officer, the government would soon arrange for the offices, official cars, police squad, staff and other facilities for the cabinet members.

If government approves, the new ministers’ block could also be used for the offices.