Several senior Awami League leaders have separately admitted that they are still in the dark about the whole thing and that only the prime minister knows the details
Discussions about the election-time Cabinet have been gaining traction as the time for announcement of the schedule for the 11th parliamentary election draws near.
Even at this point, Awami League leaders say they do not know how many members the poll-time Cabinet will have, although many of them have previously said that it will be a small one.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina hinted on Monday that the current Cabinet’s size may not be reduced when she said that the ongoing development projects would get stalled if the Cabinet was downsized.
She said she had discussed the matter with the opposition leader in parliament and asked for her views. “I told her that we would do what they demand. We will downsize the Cabinet if they want. If (they do) not (want resizing), then it [the Cabinet size] will remain the same,” she added.
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The current Cabinet comprises members from various parties, and it seems unlikely that anyone from any party that does not have representation in parliament will get a berth in the election-time Cabinet.
When contacted, several senior Awami League leaders have separately admitted that they are still in the dark about the whole thing and that only the prime minister knows the details.
Obaidul Quader, the ruling party’s general secretary, and other senior leaders have reiterated several times that the election-time government will be formed in October and will be small in size. Some of them even claimed that it would have around 21 members.
Awami League Presidium Member and 14-party spokesperson Mohammad Nasim has told the media several times that the small poll-time government will be formed 90 days before the election. It will be headed by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and only perform routine works.
On Tuesday, Nasim said that only Sheikh Hasina knows about election-time government.
On the same day, Obaidul Quader said: “Election-time government will be formed like the previous time (2014). Two or three new faces may be included and they will come from the main opposition party.”
He said the final decision would be taken at the Awami League’s Central Working Committee meeting scheduled for October 26 at the prime minister’s official residence Ganabhaban.