The announcement of the newly elected cabinet of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has sparked criticism, with social media users expressing discontent over the perceived over-representation of one district and accusations of ministers being chosen through family politics. The 15-member Cabinet, along with 5 advisers and 4 assistants to the Chief Minister, was unveiled recently.

Among the 24 appointed members, concerns have been raised as 5 hail from the same district, Swabi. Notably, Shahram Tarakai’s brother, Faisal Tarakai, and Asad Qaiser’s brother, Aqibullah, are part of the cabinet.

Additionally, two advisers, Barrister Mohammad Ali Saif, and Mashal Azam Yousafzai, along with Special Assistant Abdul Karim Khan, also represent Swabi.

Also Read: Passport Fee Hike Raises Concerns Among Aspiring Travelers in Pakistan

While PTI secured victory in all 5 seats of the provincial assembly in Swabi during the general elections, criticism has emerged for seemingly neglecting other districts. Mardan, with 8 provincial assembly seats swept by PTI, only has Zahir Shah Toro from Mardan included in the cabinet. Swat, with 8 provincial assembly seats won by PTI, sees Fazal-e-Hakeem from Swat included in the cabinet, alongside the appointment of Amjad Ali as an assistant.

Despite PTI dominating 8 provincial constituencies in Upper and Lower Dir, only Liaquat Ali has been appointed as Special Assistant from Lower Dir. Adnan Qadri represents the tribal districts in the cabinet, and in the Hazara division, Arshad Ayub from Haripur, Nazir Abbasi from Abbottabad, and Zahid Chanzeb from Mansehra have been appointed as advisers.

Region-wise, 10 individuals from central districts (Peshawar, Mardan, Swabi, Nowshera, and Charsadda), 4 from southern districts, 3 from Hazara division, and 5 from Malakand division form part of the cabinet. Additionally, one member from the tribal districts and one advisor, Muzzammil Aslam from Karachi, have also been appointed.

Social media users have expressed strong reactions against the perceived favoritism towards Swabi, while party workers from other districts and opposition members have criticized the presence of family connections in the cabinet.

Notable figures like Aqibullah, Faisal Tarakai, Adnan Qadri, Zarshid Ayub, and Khalid Latif, who are relatives of prominent political figures, have been included in the current cabinet. The appointments face scrutiny for allegedly being based on familial ties rather than merit and competence.