The Pakistan People’s Party and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz on Thursday agreed on a power-sharing formula at the Centre and decided to keep the cabinet small in the first phase.
An informal meeting between the two sides at the Parliament House here thrashed out matters relating to the formation of the government. Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar, Ch Nisar Ali Khan, and Khwaja Muhammad Asif represented the PML-N, while the PPP was represented by leader of the opposition in the Senate Mian Raza Rabbani, Raja Pervez Ashraf, Khurshid Shah, Sherry Rehman, Syed Naveed Qamar and Senator Farooq Naik.
According to sources, it was decided that the cabinet would be formed in two phases and in the first phase, 15 to 20 ministers would be inducted. Another 15 to 20 ministers would be inducted in the second phase. The sources said it was also decided that the ratio of ministers would be 55 per cent for the PPP and 45 per cent for the PML-N.
The sources indicated that the final announcement of the power-sharing formula would be made on Monday, after the joint parliamentary party meeting of the coalition partners before the inaugural session of the National Assembly.
However, the meeting failed to sort out the mode of restoration of judges through parliament and decided that modalities would be finalised at a meeting of legal experts from the two sides.
The sources indicated that the legal teams would meet on Friday (today) to finalise the modalities and that their recommendations would be sent to the respective party chiefs on Saturday. A formal announcement in this regard would be made on Monday after the oath-taking ceremony of the newly-elected members of the National assembly.
It was decided that the portfolios of External Affairs, Interior, Information, Commerce, Privatisation, and Law and Parliamentary Affairs would go to the PPP, while Defence, Finance, Education and Planning Commission would go to the PML-N besides the post of senior minister.
However, the final decision would be announced after the joint parliamentary party meeting of the coalition parties, which would be held before the oath-taking session of the National Assembly.
Meanwhile, talking to newsmen after the meeting, senior leader of the PML-N Chaudhry Nisar held out the assurance that there would be no confrontation between the establishment and parliament.
He said the PML-N would support any candidate nominated by the PPP for the office of prime minister. He said the first priority of the PML-N was reinstatement of the deposed judges who refused to take oath under the Provisional Constitution Order (PCO).
When asked about the spar between Amin Fahim and Khwaja Asif, he said there was no clash between the two. Meanwhile, central PPP leader Syed Naveed Qamar told media persons outside the Parliament House that the talks between the coalition partners were held in a very cordial atmosphere.
“We will have to evolve a joint strategy to address the problems being faced by the people, while all issues with regard to the distribution of ministries and other posts would be settled amicably,” he said.