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Immediate Cabinet reshuffle ‘unlikely’

Top leaders of the ruling Nepal Communist Party have ruled out suggestions that the Cabinet would be reshuffled immediately after the party Standing Committee meeting in the October-end.

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli along with fellow party Co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal has agreed not to reshuffle the Cabinet immediately, according to the top party leaders. During a one-on-one meeting ahead of the party secretariat meeting on Monday, the two leaders had decided against immediately replacing ministers who courted controversies and performed poorly.

Though they felt the need of serious review of the overall performance of the government, and that of each minister in particular, PM Oli and Co-chair Dahal have agreed that an immediate Cabinet reshuffle is not a solution of the hour, the leaders said. Instead of replacing such controversial ministers, the two leaders decided to give them additional 5-6 months to improve their performance, said party Spokesperson Narayan Kaji Shrestha. “Until then, Cabinet reshuffle is not possible,” he said ahead of his China and Cambodia visit.

Both the leaders have also agreed that reshuffling the Cabinet before the government completes one year in office would send a negative message, ruling party leaders said, but they will instruct the ministers having poor track record to improve their performance.

Some middle-rung NCP leaders like Sunil Paudel, Mahesh Basnyet, among others, have been saying publicly that the Cabinet would be reshuffled after the party’s Standing Committee meets on October 29 and 30.

Spokesperson Shrestha told the Post that the upcoming Standing Committee meeting would review the government’s performance and come up with ideas on ways to improve that, but “the Cabinet reshuffle is not immediately possible”.

At a function in the Capital earlier on Tuesday, Standing Committee member Paudel claimed besides reviewing performances of the ministers the upcoming meeting would reshuffle the Cabinet, including changes in the prime minister’s team. “The performance of the government is very poor and we want to bring about improvement soon. We will put up the people’s concerns and grievances to the government at the Standing Committee meeting,” Paudel added.


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