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New cabinet today

Hasina to pick some new faces

Mustafizur Rahman

The new cabinet of prime minister Sheikh Hasina will take oath of office today.
President Abdul Hamid will administer the swearing-in at his residence-cum-office Bangabhaban at 3:30pm.
Around 50 members – 29 ministers, 17 state ministers and two deputy ministers – might be inducted into the new cabinet, officials concerned said.
Sheikh Hasina may pick up some new faces having ‘good image’ to constitute her new cabinet while old figures, including AMA Muhith, Tofail Ahmed, Amir Hossain Amu, Matia Chowdhury, Syed Ashraful Islam, Abdul Latif Siddique, Khandker Mosharraf Hossian, Nurul Islam Nahid, Sahara Khatun, Rashed Khan Menon and Hasanul Haq Inu are likely to continue as ministers, AL policymakers said.
Jatiya Party-JP chairman Anwar Hossain Manju and the Ershad-led Jatiya Party’s Anisul Islam Mahmud, Ziauddin Ahmed Bablu and Mujibul Haque will also be included in the cabinet.
AL lawmakers Mohammad Nasim, Asaduzzaman Noor, Abdullah Al Islam Zacob, Saifuzzaman, Biren Sikder, Narayan Chandra Chanda, Zunayed Ahmed Palak, Khalid Mahmud, Asaduzzamana Khan and Ismat Ara  Sadeque are among the new faces, a senior official at the Cabinet Division told New Age.
Ministers, diplomats, Supreme Court judges, politicians, chiefs of the three services, lawmakers and senior government officials, among others, have been invited to the ceremonial takeover organised by the Cabinet Division.
Around 1,000 guests, including Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson Khaleda Zia, were invited to attend the oath-taking ceremony, cabinet secretary Mohammad Mushrraf Hossain Bhuiyan confirmed.
Talking to reporters at the secretariat, the top civil servant said that the incumbent cabinet would be dissolved automatically once the new cabinet would take the oath of office.
Abdul Hamid on Thursday invited the AL president to form the new government as the ruling party secured an absolute majority in the controversial January 5 national polls amidst confusions over oath-taking by members of parliament-elect before the 9th parliament’s tenure expires on January 24.
The Awami League lawmakers at its parliamentary party meeting elected prime minister Sheikh Hasina the leader of the house for the 10th parliament after they had been sworn in as members of parliament at Sangsad Bhaban on Thursday.
Neither the 9th parliament was dissolved nor did Sheikh Hasina resign as prime minister to dissolve her cabinet till Saturday evening. 
Two hundred and eighty-four lawmakers elected to the 10th Jatiya Sangsad took oath on Thursday with the 9th parliament still in place, causing confusions as most constituencies were now having two MPs.
Even before the polling could take place, the ruling alliance nominees, mostly from AL, won without contest 153 constituencies in the 300-seat parliament, more than it needs to form the next government. The BNP-led 18-party alliance boycotted the national polls.
The Article 123(3) bars an elected MP from assuming office before expiry of previous parliament and Article 148 (2A) makes it mandatory for lawmakers to take oath in three days after publication of the gazette notifications of election results.  
Article 148(3) says, ‘Where under this Constitution a person is required to make an oath before he enters upon an office he shall be deemed to have entered upon the office immediately after he makes the oath.’

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