Cabinet reshuffle done to meet current demands, situation – PM Anwar

PUTRAJAYA – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (picture) today announced a major Cabinet reshuffle, the first under his Unity Government as it enters its second year of administration.

Anwar said the Cabinet reshuffle was done as the government needs to make adjustments to meet the current demands and situation.

Anwar who retained the Finance Minister portfolio, said that the reshuffle was necessary to address every change in terms of economic development and issues affecting the people, including the cost of living.

“International acceptance, which requires the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to take up more (crucial) tasks, as well as issues related to education, especially in our efforts to explore new areas…such as artificial intelligence, digital transformation, are the things that led me to consider making some adjustments (in the Cabinet) given the current situation and demands,” he said.

Anwar said the restructuring of the Cabinet was made after discussions with the leaders of the main component parties in the Unity Government, and the list of names was submitted to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah for consent.

The swearing-in ceremony of the new appointees is scheduled to take place at Istana Negara at 2:30pm today.

Anwar’s announcement also saw the number of ministers in the Cabinet expanded from 28 to 31, while the number of deputy ministers was increased from 27 to 29, bringing the total number of Unity Government administrative members to 60.

Two ministries were restructured involving the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment, and Climate Change, which is now split into the Ministry of Energy Transition and Public Utilities, and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Sustainability.

The Communications and Digital Ministry is also split into the Ministry of Communications and the Ministry of Digital.

When asked whether there will be another reshuffle should the ministers’ performance is unsatisfactory, Anwar expressed hope that the ministers would do their level best until the next general election.

“I hope, Insya-Allah, if the performance is good and satisfactory, and there are no new pressures or issues such as digital matters, I don’t think there should be any changes for us to continue with the plan for the next four years until the next general election,” he said.

Meanwhile, Anwar said that the 20 per cent salary cut for the Cabinet members in the Unity Government would continue, including for the new appointees.

“The salary cut will continue, except for the prime minister who has no salary,” he said.

On Dec 5 last year, Anwar announced that members of the Cabinet agreed to implement a 20 per cent salary cut each month until the country’s economy recovers.

He said that this decision was made out of concern for the problems faced by the people at the moment. – BERNAMA